Friday, October 28, 2011

Fox Fall Pilot Review: Allen Gregory - Premieres October 30; Sitcom Stars On Talk Shows (Week of October 31, 2011)


Allen Gregory

Allen Gregory - Sundays 8:30PM ET/PT on Fox
Premieres Sunday, October 30, 2011 at 8:30PM ET/PT

Allen Gregory De Longpre is just your ordinary seven-year-old. Well, that actually depends upon how you define "ordinary." Having grown up in a wealthy two-parent (both parents being male) household, things have started to change for him as one of his fathers can no longer afford to home school him, and it is time for him to make the transition to a public school. But being unable to relate to other seven-year-olds (or other people in general, for that matter), that transition isn't going to be easy. He's a little advanced for his age in some areas, yet in other areas, he is just completely clueless about the world around him. In this new Fox animated sitcom, he'll try to adjust to his new world--at least to the best of his ability.


Cast Details:

Jonah Hill as Allen Gregory DeLongpre
French Stewart as Richard DeLongpre, Allen's father
Nat Faxon as Jeremy DeLongpre, Richard's life partner-husband
Joy Osmanski as Julie, Allen's adopted Cambodian sister
Renée Taylor as Principal Gottlieb
Leslie Mann as Gina Winthrop

Jonah Hill (Allen Gregory) is the star of the series, the kid trying to adapt to a life where he isn't the center of the universe. Hill is well-known in the entertainment industry, most notable with his film roles in The 40-Year-Old Virgin, Evan Almighty, and Superbad.

French Stewart (Richard) plays the role Allen Gregory's father in the series. Stewart has had roles in series including The New WKRP in Cincinnati, Seinfeld, and Pushing Daisies, but is best known for his role as Harry Solomon on the series 3rd Rock from the Sun.

Nat Faxon (Jeremy) is Richard's life-partner/husband in the series. Faxon is a relative newcomer to the entertainment industry, but has appeared in The Cleveland Show and the movie Beerfest.

Joy Osmanski (Julie) plays the role of Allen Gregory's adopted sister from Cambodia. Osmanski's most well-known role was on the series The Loop, which aired for two seasons on Fox, but she has also appeared in Samantha Who? and Better Off Ted.

Renée Taylor (Principal Gottlieb) plays the role of the elderly and unattractive principal that Allen Gregory is romantically attracted to. While Taylor's name may not be so recognizable, her career has been lengthy and impressive, primarily as a writer and director. But TV (particularly sitcom) fans will recognize her from her role of Sylvia Fine, the mother of Fran Drescher's character on the sitcom The Nanny.

Leslie Mann (Gina Winthrop) plays the role of Allen Gregory's teacher. Mann is the wife of well-known producer Judd Apatow (who has also done much work with Jonah Hill), and has appeared in many of his films, including The 40-Year-Old Virgin and Knocked Up.


Pilot Plot:

The pilot begins with a party for Allen Gregory to celebrate his big victory: he has just won a Tony Award! Except... not really. The party was put together by his father, Richard, and Richard's life partner Jeremy in an attempt to ease the bad news that is about to come. He's no longer going to be home-schooled and will be sent to a public school.

It doesn't take long to realize that this new environment is going to be a major adjustment for Allen Gregory. Accustomed to a world that revolves around him and everybody catering to every one of his whims, he is now just one among many, and the adaptations are difficult. He begins the school day by trying to do an uninvited "Q&A session" for the class to get to know him, proceeds to seat himself at the "cool kids" table in the cafeteria (where he also brings a bottle of wine), and ends up in the elderly and, well, ugly principal's office, where he even proceeds to try to make romantic moves on her. And to top it all off, he, well, defecates in his pants and ends up going home crying. Just how will he adapt to his new school if this is how his first day went?

Analysis:

In viewing the pilot, I can already see some major problems with this series. It is basically just another fish-out-of-water animated comedy that seems to focus on the mere act of adjustment, and I'm not sure how this series can go on from there. Will every episode of the series be about another day at school? I feel that there is limited potential to where this can go, and I'm not sure how the series can handle that.

But that is far from the only problem that I saw in the pilot. Simply put, although the pilot was mildly enjoyable, it just really wasn't that funny in my opinion. There were a few mildly humorous moments, such as when Allen Gregory was trying to make the moves on his principal, but it wasn't one of those situations that was just completely hilarious. I was hoping for so much more in that regard.

I also would have liked to have seen more about the other members of the family, such as the "two dads" and Allen Gregory's adopted sister, Julie. In fact, it was hard to even remember that Julie existed in the pilot. She had very few lines and was almost seen as an afterthought, yet there is so much more that could (and should) have been done with her character. Yet that opportunity seemed to be wasted. Even though the series is called Allen Gregory and is supposed to focus on him, it sometimes seemed like he really was the only person in the world.


Conclusion:

Unfortunately, I feel that Fox has once again fallen flat on another animated comedy. They have attempted so many of these over the years, yet it seems that lately, only the Seth MacFarlane series have really shown any level of enjoyment and success. I don't predict this series lasting too long, and even if it does, I can easily see it becoming one of the 7 PM hour series that just seems to air, yet nobody really cares about it. Perhaps if the series had some way of broadening the series instead of making it all about Allen Gregory's universe (even though that is supposed to be the premise of the series) and making it a bit funnier, there would be fewer problems with the series, but I feel that it is already dead in the water--and will only win awards like Allen Gregory's fake Tony award that he won in the beginning of the pilot.

Final Numbers (out of 5 stars):

Watchability: 3/5
Funniness: 2.5/5
Overall: 3/5

-- Reviewed by skees53 on 10/28/11

Discuss the show after you watch it on Sunday, October 30 on our message board.

Related Links:

  • Fox.com Official Site
  • TV.com
  • epguides.com
  • Internet Movie Database
  • Wikipedia
  • Allen Gregory Photo Gallery

  • Preview:





    It's Friday, so it is time for "Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows" for the coming week. This is where we list what sitcom stars are appearing on talk shows for the coming week, the stars are both current and past sitcom stars, so this is for all sitcom fans of all eras!
    For the week of October 24-28, 2011, we have many current sitcom stars and past sitcom stars on TV talk shows! All times listed are Eastern. So get your DVR's (or whatever you use) ready! Ready? Here is all what you need to know for the coming week!

    Monday, October 31, 2011
    • Zooey Deschanel (New Girl) - Watch the adorable Zooey on the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson at 12:37am on CBS.
    • Mindy Kaling (The Office) - Mindy appears on Comedy Central's The Daily Show with Jon Stewart at 11pm.
    • Neil Patrick Harris (How I Met Your Mother/Doogie Howser, M.D.) - Neil stops by The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check listings.
    Tuesday, November 1, 2011
    • Whitney Cummings (Whitney) - Catch Whitney on The Late Show with David Letterman at 11:35pm on CBS.
    • Tracy Morgan (30 Rock/The Tracy Morgan Show) - Tracy drops by Late Night with Jimmy Fallon at 12:37am on NBC.
    Wednesday, November 2, 2011
    • Ellen DeGeneres (The Ellen Show) - Watch Ellen on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 12am on ABC.
    • Ted Danson (Cheers/Becker) - Ted visits the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson at 12:37am on CBS.
    • Mindy Kaling (The Office) - Mindy talks about her book, Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns), on NBC's Today between 9-10am and later chats with the ladies of The View on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
    • Bill Cosby (The Cosby Show/Cosby/The Bill Cosby Show) - Bill discuss his book, I Didn't Ask to Be Born: (But I'm Glad I Was), on NBC's Today between 7-9am and 10-11am.
    Thursday, November 3, 2011
    • Alan Alda (M*A*S*H) - Catch Alan on the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson at 12:37am on CBS.
    • Miranda Cosgrove (iCarly) - Miranda visits Chelsea Lately on E! at 11pm.
    • Louis C.K. (Louie) - Louis drops by Conan at 11pm on TBS.
    • Tracy Morgan (30 Rock/The Tracy Morgan Show) - Tracy continues to make the rounds on The View on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
    • Katie Aselton (The League) - Katie appears on The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
    Friday, November 4, 2011
    • Bill Cosby (The Cosby Show/Cosby/The Bill Cosby Show) - Watch the legendary Mr. Cosby on The Late Show with David Letterman at 11:35pm on CBS.
    • Neil Patrick Harris (How I Met Your Mother/Doogie Howser, M.D.) - Neil is a guest on the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson at 12:37am on CBS.
    • Drew Carey (The Drew Carey Show) - Drew appears on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon at 12:37am on NBC.
    • Florence Henderson (The Brady Bunch) - Florence stops by The Rosie Show at 7pm on OWN and will also be on Tavis Smiley on PBS, but check listings for time.
    • Whitney Cummings (Whitney) - Whitney chats with the ladies of The View on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
    • Michael J. Fox (Family Ties/Spin City) - Michael visits LIVE! with Regis & Kelly, so check your listings.
    • Johnny Galecki (The Big Bang Theory/Roseanne) - Johnny drops by The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check listings.
    • Alan Alda (M*A*S*H) - Alan wraps up his appearances this week on The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
    Leave us comments on our message board or Tweet/Facebook us to let us know what you think of this Friday feature! We do listen!


    New on DVD/Blu-ray (July)

    Archie Bunker's Place - Season One (Mill Creek) Married with Children - The Complete Series (Mill Creek) Playing House - Season 1 Growing Pains - The Complete Fifth Season WKRP in Cincinnati - The Complete Third Season

    07/07 - Archie Bunker's Place - Season One (Mill Creek)
    07/07 - Barney Miller - The Final (Eighth) Season
    07/07 - Married with Children - Season Eleven (Mill Creek)
    07/07 - Married with Children - The Complete Series (Mill Creek)
    07/07 - The Michael J. Fox Show - The Complete First Season
    07/07 - Playing House - Season 1
    07/14 - Growing Pains - The Complete Fifth Season (WBShop.com)
    07/14 - WKRP in Cincinnati - The Complete Third Season
    07/28 - Mama's Family - Mama's Favorites - Season 7
    More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


    Sitcoms Airing Tonight

    Wednesday, July 29


    The Middle - "The Waiting Game" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
    Sue tries to clear her head by making potpourri Sue-venir sachets to give away to her classmates, while Frankie is on pins and needles as they nervously wait to find out if Sue has been accepted to any of the colleges she applied to. Meanwhile, Brick kicks Axl out of the bedroom and into the dining room as he attempts to find some peace and serenity so that he can attempt to write a novel, and Mike refuses to admit that he was rocking out in his car and singing at the top of his lungs – even after his whole family witnessed him doing it.

    The Goldbergs - "I Drank the Mold" (ABC, 8:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
    During his birthday sleepover Beverly has planned, Adam’s friend Garry shares his dad’s home brewed beer and gets everyone sick. Many of the parents believe Adam is a bad influence and forbid his friends from hanging out with him. Meanwhile, Murray tells Barry and Erica he will buy a new CD player only if they are able to write the greatest song ever. What they write is horrible but when Murray hears the song, he recognizes Erica’s singing talent and her love of music.

    Modern Family - "Spring Break" (ABC, 9:00PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
    Spring break has Claire doing some spring cleaning, while Phil struggles with not being a spring chicken when Luke starts outperforming him at seemingly everything. Haley takes Alex to a music festival to take her mind off of colleges, and Gloria and Jay challenge one another to give up Spanish soap operas and cigars respectively. However, when Gloria accompanies Cameron to his faculty talent show, she projects the soapy drama she craves onto Cam’s rivalry with Senor Kaplan, and Jay tags along with Mitchell to pick up Lily from camp so he can sneak a smoke.

    black-ish - "30 Something" (ABC, 9:30PM ET/PT) (Repeat)
    Things begin to fall apart, in more ways than one, when Dre hurts himself playing basketball right before his 40th birthday. He hands the planning of his big party over to his much younger, hipper assistant, fearing he really is getting too old to be cool. Bow and Ruby face off over who can get Dre the best gift, and the kids try to figure out what to give their dad for his special day.


    Melissa & Joey - "Be the Bigger Person" (ABC Family, 8:00PM ET/PT)
    Mel gets into a war of words with a citizen who catches her in a politically awkward situation.

    Baby Daddy - "What Happens in Vegas" (ABC Family, 8:30PM ET/PT)
    Tucker moonlights as a lounge singer in Las Vegas; Danny reveals his big secret to Ben.


    The Jim Gaffigan Show - "A Night at the Plaza" (TV Land, 10:00PM ET/PT)
    Jim plans a romantic anniversary that includes a Broadway show and stay at The Plaza hotel. The night is interrupted by visits from Daniel, Dave, Dave’s girlfriend and her jealous ex. Not quite the anniversary Jim had planned.

    Impastor - "Bird of Pray" (TV Land, 10:30PM ET/PT)
    Buddy’s first Sunday service is so unorthodox, a livid Schmidt calls in the bishop to assess the new pastor’s competence. Dora makes an unusual request for Buddy, while Alexa and Russell vie for his affection.


    The Game - "What More Can I Say?" (BET, 10:00PM ET/PT)
    Jason and Kelly are shocked; the Sabers have food poisoning; Keira questions her relationship with Malik.

    Complete TV Listings


    Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of July 27) (All times ET unless noted)

    Wednesday, July 29, 2015

    • Christina Applegate (Up All Night/Samantha Who?/Jesse/Married with Children) - Watch Christina on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
    • Jason Segel (How I Met Your Mother) - Jason stops by The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
    • Amy Sedaris (Strangers with Candy) - Amy visits The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC.
    • Ed Helms (The Office) - Ed stops by Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC. He also chats about the film Vacation on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am, on LIVE! with Kelly and Michael (check your listings), and on the AOL Build Show.
    • Felicity Huffman (Sports Night) - Felicity drops by The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
    • Jack McBrayer (30 Rock) - Jack is a guest on a repeat of Last Call with Carson Daly at 1:35am on NBC.
    • Rob Corddry (Ballers/The Winner) - Rob appears on a repeat of Conan at 11pm on TBS.
    • Denis Leary (Sex&Drugs&Rock&Roll/The Job) - Denis gives the scoop on his new series on Rachael Ray, so check your local listings.
    • Malcolm-Jamal Warner (The Cosby Show/Malcolm & Eddie/Reed Between the Lines) - Malcolm-Jamal is a guest on The Boris and Nicole Show on select Fox-owned stations, so check your local listings.
    • Kym Whitley (Young & Hungry/Animal Practice/Sparks) - Kym appears on The Boris and Nicole Show, so check your local listings.
    • Jonathan Silverman (Significant Mother/The Single Guy/Gimme a Break) - Jonathan talks about his new series Significant Mother on Access Hollywood Live, so check your local listings.
    • Mike Epps and Jessie T. Usher (Survivor's Remorse) - Mike and Jessie are guests on the AOL Build Show.
    • Michael Rosenbaum (Impastor/Breaking In) - Michael will be on People Now.
    • Kristin Davis (Sex and the City/Bad Teacher) - Kristin is a guest on a repeat of Tavis Smiley on PBS, so check your local listings.