Synopsis: A comedy band try to make it.
What Season: 1
Review: Garfunkel and Oates was probably the most frustrating show of the year. Frustrating because I wanted to like it so much. I heard them years ago and have followed them every since. I think they make pretty hilarious songs and have a good act. The problem is that the writing is so bad, it’s hard to care or even watch.
Let’s compare it to the show that it is most compared to: Flight of the Conchords. So in the pilot episode of that show, the group had two songs: one about meeting a girl at a party and another about pretending to not cry. So the story became one of them meets a girl and then gets dumped a week later. The songs are so easily place in that story that you don’t even notice they wrote the songs beforehand. Sometimes they would just start talking about a very specific thing then cut to song about said thing then back to the actual storyline. Here you can always tell that the song was written before the show as the songs are forced in so awkward and forcefully it gets frustrating how lazy it is.
One of the main things I noticed that happened in almost every episode was one of the duo telling another one, “Hey do you want to (insert joke here.)” ”Hey do you want to talk about our imaginary fan?” “Hey do you ever notice…” That’s not a smooth transition! That’s lazily changing the subject! That would be awkward even if you did it in real life.
Hey do you want to talk about You’re the Worst?
SEE! That’s weird and makes you realize the shitty writing. This would be fine but even the story was weak. I mean blondes get more attention from men? Really? Did they still that from married with children? Guys don’t like girls that talk? These story lines are straight out of the 90s. Yeah so really hard as I tried the show just never came together.
Worse Episode: Pilot The pilot was the very beginning of the problem. The pilot has Anthony Jeselnik. I am a very big fan of Anthony Jeselnik. But this show wasn’t about Jeselnik, so he shouldn’t have been the best of the pilot. He was the funniest and most charming character. That doesn’t help you when the show isn’t about you.
Favorite Episode: Speechless I know I used this as an example of something dumb as the show is about them not talking but this is also the only episode that feels like it’s not straight out of 1994. See the joke is that guys like them more because they can’t talk so they decide not to talk at all! This is pretty insane premise taken to an extreme degree. The reason it works here and not in other episodes is because they acknowledge this. See the rest of the show seems to take place in a weird mix of the real world and fake world. But not like in Flight where the world was an innocent world according to the group but a dark one according to everyone else. Here the world doesn’t set any rule for what the fake world is so it just feels like every joke stands on it’s own and isn’t connected. This doesn’t suck you and actually forces you out.
But Speechless spins the premise on it’s head and actually uses the silliness to work in the story. If the entire series was like this it would work and the outdated storylines would be a part of it. But as it is, it’s a rare gem in a giant misstep for a funny band.
Trivia: Has not been renewed.