Judging from the ratings, you probably didn’t watch Bent last night. There’s a good chance you haven’t even heard of NBC’s newest comedy. Similar to shows that aren’t The Voice or 30 Rock, there wasn’t a great deal of marketing and if you don’t already watch NBC, you probably didn’t see any previews.
Fortunately for all of you that missed out, I watch Are You There Chelsea? (not a particularly amazing show by any means, but I’m inexplicably drawn to anything with Lenny Clarke, Laura Prepon and Jake McDorman) and I was too lazy to change the channel. This turned out to be a good and bad thing. I’m not sure if I like Bent, but someone at NBC must have realized the pilot isn’t enough to sell viewers on the show, so they offered up two new episodes (Pilot and Smitten). If you trust my opinion as the gold, which I’m assuming you do, then here are a few reasons (mainly the cast) you should tune in for the next episode (Wednesday 9/8c):
- Amanda Peet (Alex) is one of the leads. She’s hot and has a history of being pretty humorous. David Walton (Pete) is also hot and was recently on Happy Endings, which demonstrated that he’s funny too. These two have good comedic (and potentially romantic) energy. He offers the easy-going bad boy to her tightly wound, straight-laced good girl. You know that they will inevitably date or she’ll get drunk one episode and kiss him, but they have enough chemistry where the will they/won’t they wouldn’t get too boring too quickly.
- The resident black BFF (a staple for many comedies, especially on NBC) is played by J.B. Smoove. If you don’t know him from Pootie Tang, you’ll recognize him from Curb Your Enthusiasm. He immediately won me over when he noted that smitten is a ‘white person word’, something that isn’t entirely untrue.
- Margo Harshman (Tawny Dean, Even Stevens) and Joey King (Ramona Quimby, Ramona and Beezus) help balance out some of Alex’s neurosis as her sister and daughter, respectively. It’s awesome to see little Tawny as an adult who day drinks tequila and can’t always remember the guys she’s slept with.
- Pete’s dad is played by Jeffrey Tambor (Daddy Bluth, Arrested Development). That should be enough to garner a view or two from any AD fan, but his character (Walt) is funny as well. He’s the kind of dad that carries around Malibu rum in his pocket, plays Fleetwood Mac on a department store piano and sleeps with women 1/2 his age. Also, his interactions with Gary (Jesse Plemons, Friday Night Lights) could potentially be one of the best parts of the show.
- There isn’t an overwhelming premise (i.e., thirtysomethings adjusting to their new roles as parents), which means that the show isn’t tied to any of its plots. All we know is that Alex is recently divorced and Pete is her contractor and a recovering gambler/stoner. The lack of having a point could be a good thing and give this show room to grow. Or it could be the reason no one grows attached and the show ultimately gets cancelled. Both realistic options.
Nicole is a TV junkie and TVDM helps her feed a lifelong addiction. She can be found here, providing biased commentary (sprinkled with a few Pop Up Video-esque insights) on her favorite shows, every week.