I've been reading the user comments and threads on the message board for a week even though I hadn't seen the show yet. I just found the posts amusing.
I finally saw the show last night and unfortunately for Tyler Perry and TBS...these posts have been more amusing than the show. It's just not funny. Not only because the jokes aren't any good but the jokes aren't delivered well either. The actor playing Calvin tries the hardest to sell a joke but even then he oversells it. Not even because of his acting, mainly because the jokes are so bad that if you try to sell it you'll easily oversell it.
Literally everything about this show is weak. The writing, the directing, the acting, the blocking, the camera work, the editing.
Throughout the entire show I noticed how something was getting in the way of the storytelling and the jokes. Even the damn laugh track got in the way. The crowd noise was used inappropriately and sometimes the wrong crowd noise was used. They'd use a "Oooooo" when there should've been laughter.
It's a bad Fresh Prince of Bel Air. That was a show that tackled subject matter that the black community could relate to but didn't do it in a tacky, over-dramatic or sometimes over simplistic way like "Tyler Perry's House of Payne" does. AND it was actually funny because the actors could act and the lead had star power.
There was ONE time during either of last night's episode that an actual joke occurred.
In correcting his wife's word usage, Curtis says, "But them weren't panties. Them were big assed draws!" I didn't laugh but at least it was an actual joke.
The moment after a joke like this occurs is the moment a Bill Cosby or a Will Smith would've taken hold of the scene. They'd run with the joke and make the scene funny and in turn, better. In LaVan Davis' incapable hands, however, the scene fell flat.
Another reason for this was poor writing. Punchlines weren't set up well enough. Silly gags were used to get a cheap laugh. They'd look for a joke in the wrong places.
Explain to me why an anger management coach would look like Richard Simmons. That was a cheap sight gag that didn't make sense...and wasn't funny.
That's not the only way the writing got to me last night. I found one episode to be homophobic. When Curtis sees his nephew's son with a tutu around his neck he runs to pray because he thinks the boy is gay. Heaven forbid someone be gay! Spout out any Bible verses you want, it is what it is. And it was homophobic. That's an awfully polarizing thing to have on a show that, according to the show's defenders, is for the community. Stuff like that only serves to break up our communities.
Seriousness like that last point aside, the show is just plain bad. In every way. I'm trying to figure out why on Earth TBS ordered 100 episodes. That's 5 seasons worth! 5 seasons??
I don't see how they'll be able to justify CJ's staying with them for much longer than a season but they have to because it's the whole premise of the show. It's the reason for it's namesake. I know they tried to address that last night when CJ said, "I can't afford a new place. I have a mortgage on a house I don't even live in."
Ummmm, get a second job? Maybe you should've gotten that insurance?
This isn't a good enough reason for CJ and his kids to live with his uncle for 5 years.
And there isn't a good enough reason for me to watch this terrible show again unless I want to see how a show can be this bad.
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