Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Review: Guys with Kids

NBC - Wednesdays 9:30/8:30c

Special sneak peak available On Demand (Xfinity) now.

There was a time when you heard "such and such was filmed before a live studio audience" and you got excited.  Cheers did it.  Frasier did it.  NBC is apparently trying to bring this back, but all that ended up happening when I hear that phrase in front of Guys with Kids is feel bad for the live studio audience.

Guys with Kids features three men at different stages in their lives, one a stay-at-home Dad, one a divorcee, and one a working man married to Meadow Soprano; all of them have kids, and all of them carry their babies to the bar in a carrier.

Also, none of them are funny.

1.  Does it entertain me?
No.  No it does not.

Trying to capitalize on the recent movie version of the book, What to Expect when you're Expecting, Guys with Kids takes the group of Dads in that movie and lets us see them every day.  The difference is those Dads had Chris Rock, and we have Anthony Anderson.  A skinny Anthony Anderson, too, not Teddy from Hang Time.  Those Dads had actual parenting advice, and seemed like actual Dads.  These dads seem like men with rag dolls strapped to their chests.

They don't say funny things, they don't do interesting things, their babies don't cry or even make a noise, and they seem to spend their time whining and making us feel sorry for them.  Except we don't, because we hate that they are on our screen instead of something entertaining.

The pilot follows the three men around as they go from their bar to their home and to a Knicks game, fearing ex-wives and not helping out current wives.  They say stuff and their wives laugh.  I think they must have been drunk at the time, because there's no way that they found what their husbands said was funny.


These men are so collossally unfunny, that the putridness coming out of their mouths at that time actually passed for funny, because the wives had spent their entire married lives listening to such nonsense, that this was now the only funny they knew.  Humor is a matter of perception, and over time, their humor genes may have eroded into what they have now, allowing for their husbands to pass off as funny.

This would indeed be a sad fate.

2.  Is it realistic?
I've never seen three men at a sports bar with babies strapped to their bodies drinking beer.  The men, not the babies.  But since the babies weren't making a peep even though they were in a loud sports bar, I wouldn't be surprised if there wasn't a bit of a nip in their bottles.  Maybe they're teething.

The relationships might be realistic, but if that's the case, I will never voluntarily hang out with any of the people on this show.

3.  Are immoral actions defended?
No one seemed to be doing anything too lewd, so that's a good thing.  Two of the marriages seemed strong, one ended in divorce, and she was presented as crazy.  So that's something.

4.  Are traditional family values upheld?
I didn't pay close enough attention to the show to learn any names, so I'm going to just go with it.

One guy didn't want to take his wife to a school dance with the Titanic as its theme, so Meadow went with Teddy's wife to the dance instead.  Or she's still pining for Jackie Junior, and this was her big chance to try to see if he was there.

The divorced couple have a weird attachment/fear thing going on, but other than that seemed ok.

None of the kids had been sent to be raised by wolves, so that's another plus.
Guys with Kids won't last until Thanksgiving, so there's really no reason to even start watching.  It might not even make it to the premiere night, which is still a week away.  It will be cancelled, and rightfully so, because it's just not very good.

Grade: D

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