Last night’s Revenge essentially ended the Spring television season, but do not fret sun adverse people because the summer season starts tonight when TBS launches a new comedy Men at Work tonight at 10:00 (with a second episode premiering at 10:30). With the addition of Conan O’Brien, you would think the channel would have reinvested in its lineup but in the two years since signing the late night host, all they have show for it was a one and done eighties college show and a bunch of shows presented by Tyler Perry.
All that is about to change starting tonight when the first of two new sitcoms hit the channel that have nothing to do with Tyler Perry as well as the recently acquired Cougar Town which will premiere early next year (hopefully with a new name). They are also getting into the unscripted genre with four new shows also coming next year. And most importantly a show called Norm MacDonald Is Trending is currently in development and I am hoping for a pick up any second now.
Back to tonight. Men at Work does not exactly reinvent wheel or even copies the much hyped comedies of the day like Cougar Town, Men at Work is decisively old school. Just how old? The work referenced in the title is at a magazine. Nope, not even an online Zine, but a paper and ink kind. Not old enough for you? The secondary plot centers on a girlfriend trying to get one of the main characters to talk dirty to her just like the famous Seinfeld episode. Granted what Men at Work came up with was much dirty than asking if those were, “the panties your mother laid out for you.”
You have also seen these characters plenty of times before. James Lesure (Mr. Sunshine) is the horn dog, Adam Busch (The Jury) is the nerdy one, Michael Cassidy (Hidden Palms) is the douchebag with a heart of gold, while Danny Masterson (Joe’s Life) just got dumped and is living his own version of Swingers but without any new cool language (unless coining the word whorange counts) and instead of any swing music there is a song by The Avett Brothers (sorry, no Down Under usage, at least not yet).
Severely missing from the cast is anyone of the female persuasion. There is not even a sassy secretary at their place of business. Amy Smart (who apparently is doing a favor for Road Trip co-star Brekin Myers; oh yeah, did I forget to mention the show was created by that dude from Road Trip who also wrote the first three episodes? Hopefully he does not owe Tom Green any favors) shows up to break up with Masterson so there is always a chance she may show up again. But the only likely actress we will see more than once after the first episode is Busch’s girlfriend played by Meredith Hagner (Lights Out) because he really cannot break up with her because she is the boss’s daughter (who will show up in the form of J.K. Simmons in the second episode tonight and also gets the best laughs of the early season).
Sure Men at Work will probably get crushed by critics, and for the most part it will warranted, but I have to admit that I laughed more than once during the first episode. There is a sly Three's Company reference if you can catch it and it is hard to hate something that hard that makes fun of Dane Cook. The show may not reinvent the wheel but there are plenty of people who do not think it needs reinvented like all the people who were glad to see Tim Allen back on television last fall when he swapped three boys out for three girls and very little else.
Men at Work airs Thursdays at 10:00 on TBS.