Monday, September 18, 2006

HIMYM & The Class: In need of a switcheroo

Thoughts on the return of "How I Met Your Mother" and the debut of "The Class" comin' right up...

I am very, very pleased with the "HIMYM" writers right now. Ted and Robin are now an item, which takes advantage of Radnor and Smulders' chemistry, but they haven't taken over the show, ala Ross 'n Rachel. Loved Barney's despair at all their displays of schmoopiness, with seppuku being the best of his various suicide mimes. (Barney's pimped-out version of the Tom Joad "I'll be there" speech was another highlight.)

Meanwhile, Marshall takes over the soap opera quotient and manages to make it a whole lot funnier than Ted and Robin's UST ever was, particularly him pelting the happy couple at Yankees Stadium. I also liked the scene at the gun range; any effort to make Robin more than the hot girl is a wise move. And my buddy Joe Adalian gets Tucker-ized as the identity thief. Lucky bastige. I was told years ago that because there are so few Sepinwalls in the world (a little over a dozen total), it won't clear legally, so I can never receive such an honor. Sigh...

As I've mentioned in my various pilot review posts, "The Class" does not get off to a strong start. The good: I like Jason Ritter, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Heather Goldenhersh (and, for the record, she talks that way in real life, too) and Jon Bernthal. The bad: I hate every scene with the blonde anchorwoman and her flaming husband (not only did Crane tread similar ground with Ross' lesbian wife, but it makes one of the show's main characters into a bigger idiot than Joey Tribiani), and there are so many characters that the jokes wind up being really broad, obvious and not that funny.

I liked the next couple of episodes better, though some other critics I spoke to think the improvement is all in my head. We'll see. Either way, I'm baffled that CBS is making this the lead-off hitter instead of "HIMYM."

What did everybody else think about either show?


Anonymous said...

HIMYM was excellent, I think you hit all the high points.

The Class has potential - I thought most of the characters were pretty amusing.

I've given up trying to understand why execs do what they do. Maybe they just figure they have no comedy competion in the 8-9 timeslot, so why not leave HIMYM in the same place as last year?

Joel said...

It's not in your head, Alan... I've seen the first three eps of The Class, too, and I think it gets better as it goes along. I hope they ditch the "gay but not gay" husband soon... it's just far too over the top to be able to handle for 22 episodes, much less multiple seasons.

HIMYM opened very strong, didn't it? And how 'bout that scene at the end, where we see the dark-haired Lilly hesitate and turn around at the entrance to the bar? I really hope they keep this storyline going for a while.

davesboa said...

HIMYM's Barney just keeps on getting better. Though seppuku has been mimed before on various shows/movies, his added finger "bloodspatter" at the end cracked me up. It's nice to see them delving a little deeper with the relationships on this show. It never fails to make me chuckle.

"The Class" was had a good enough start to make me want to continue watching to see if it holds up. A few of the characters will have to have an early demise or become seriously annoying (the gay husband the obvious one here). I did love the girl with her "jaunty" hat and the cute little relationship with suicide boy (their names currently escape me).

Kristen said...

We had the complete opposite reaction in my house.

My husband and I laughed longer and harder at The Class than we did at HIMYM and the other 2 CBS comedies combined, which was a pleasant surprise. And the flamboyant husband was one of the funniest jokes of the pilot, we thought. The two sisters also cracked me up.

HIMYM was pretty weak, particularly with the Ted/Robin stuff, but that may be because I don't think they have much chemistry. I'm just looking forward to their inevitable breakup. Barney, however, was as sharp as ever, and I like the changeup for Marshall and Lily.

Unknown said...

No one does "pathetic break-up guy" better than Jason Segal. As "Nick" in Freaks & Geeks he was sad and needy; as "Eric" on Undeclared he was mildy psychotic and, well, pathetic. It's a shame we won't see him down in the dumps as Marshall for much longer. I liked Ted's speech about how "sad Marshll" was out of Lily's league.

I'm hoping The Class evolves a bit more and finds its rhythm. I stick around for a few more episodes to see.

Tosy And Cosh said...

Question: Suicide guy didn't kill hat girl, did he?

Pondering: The flaming husband was funny, if easy - I can see why they went with it, even knowing it was a bit cliched and would be hard to sustain. BUT - what if the intent is to reveal at some point, in no uncertain terms, that he is heterosexual, and madly in love with his wife, That he has the personality and cultural identity of a gay man but the sexual drive and identity of a very straight man? That could be interesting.

Chip Chandler said...

I thought I'd read somewhere that the husband was actually meant to be straight but flamey, as tosy and cosh suggested. Much like, I suppose, Paul Lynde in "The Paul Lynde Show." Doesn't make him any more palatable to me, though.

Zodin2008 said...

I am baffled by the comment that said "The Class" was better then "HIMYM".

HIMYM hit every single right romantic and comic note. The cast was in tune with one another and everyone had the chance to be funny.

"The Class" was OK, hit & miss characters and it's a pilot so it needs to find its sea legs. (Much like HIMYM did last year). But I agree on the good and bad characters with the exception of Lina (high pitched girl). Her character is fine hut her voice made me want to climb the wall of my house like Spiderman.

Anonymous said...

HIMYM is the only traditional sitcom on TV right now that will be considered a classic in ten years. The Class won't last the year.

Tosy And Cosh said...

Chip - it will only be palatable to me if they SHOW the straight side sometimes. THAT contrast could make for some real funny.