Friday, August 11, 2017

Fri-Yay: Animated Sitcoms; School is Back in Session This Fall on TV Land's Teachers

It's time for another edition of Fri-Yay! That means we will take a look back on some sitcom happenings in recent days or weeks or other fun sitcomy stuff. It's a sitcom lover's paradise! Happy Fri-Yay!

Rick and Morty

by Vincent

Animated sitcoms have been a staple of the genre for many decades, at least since the days of shows like The Jetsons and The Flintstones. Of course, the genre really came onto its own in the '90s, with classic series like The Simpsons and, later, South Park and Futurama paving the way for adult animation to be considered a viable and equally respectable genre of sitcom capable of achieving the same heights as live-action series. These days, plenty of TV's best, most interesting, and most innovative television can be found in the world of adult animation. From shows like Bojack Horseman to Bob's Burgers to Archer, animated sitcoms today are some of the funniest and most daring series in all of television. And one of those excellent animated shows, Rick and Morty, returned for its third season a few weeks ago, and is continuing its run as one of TV's best, smartest, and most fun shows.

Rick and Morty, like many Adult Swim shows, is a truly weird, sometimes dark, and incredibly unique show. It follows the science fiction adventures of the brilliant but slightly sociopathic time traveler Rick and his grandson Morty - think of it as a darker take on the Back to the Future franchise. However, while many Adult Swim shows are content to get by on their conceptual weirdness (which can lead to TV that's interesting but a little alienating), Rick and Morty grounds its out-of-this-world adventures with genuine human connection and empathy. Dan Harmon (the co-creator of the show, along with Justin Roiland) brings the same pathos he brought to Community to the series, which makes it feel like more than just a collection of weird science fiction concepts and violent humor. The show feels like it has something to say about the human condition - take, for example, a line from Morty in the show's first season, in an episode where Rick allows the family to watch TV that shows programs from other dimensions, Morty consults his distraught sister (who has just learned she may have ruined her parents' happiness after seeing their lives in a dimension where she wasn't born) with: "Nobody exists on purpose, nobody belongs anywhere, we're all going to die, so just come watch TV." This line basically sums up Rick and Morty's worldview: even if our lives aren't effected by a mad time traveler grandpa, they're still full of chaos and unpredictability. So why not enjoy it while we can? Rick and Morty doesn't always get this philosophical, but it can - and even when it doesn't, it's still an incredibly great time. If you're looking for a new and interesting show that's just a little different from anything else on TV, I highly recommend Rick and Morty.


Teachers

School is back in session this fall! Don't be late for class on Tuesday, November 7, 2017 at 10pm ET/PT, when TV Land's critical darling Teachers returns for the second half of season two. The first 10 episodes of the Grade-A comedy's second season, which The Hollywood Reporter hailed as "stronger and funnier than ever," aired earlier this year and hit multiple series high ratings. Teachers revolves around a group of elementary school teachers who are trying to mold the minds of America's youth, but don't have their own lives together at all. The series is created by and stars the improv group The Katydids – Caitlin Barlow, Katy Colloton, Cate Freedman, Kate Lambert, Katie O'Brien and Kathryn RenĂ©e Thomas. The second part of season two will see Ms. Bennigan (O'Brien) keep naively pursuing Hot Dad (guest star Ryan Caltagirone), Ms. Watson (Lambert) in an unexpected relationship, Mrs. Adler (Thomas) and Ms. Feldman (Freedman) dealing with a "serial pooper" around the school, Ms. Snap (Colloton) finding the school's forgotten library, Ms. Cannon (Barlow) discovering an artistic prodigy, and even an entire episode taking place in the 1940s. Teachers has already been renewed for a 20-episode third season to premiere in 2018.


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Thursday, February 21

The Big Bang Theory - "The D&D Vortex" (CBS, 8:00PM ET/PT)
When the gang finds out Wil Wheaton hosts a celebrity Dungeons and Dragons game involving William Shatner, Joe Manganiello, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Kevin Smith, deception and betrayal are the path to make it to the one open seat.

Young Sheldon - "A Loaf of Bread and a Grand Old Flag" (CBS, 8:30PM ET/PT)
Things spiral out of control when Sheldon boycotts his favorite bread company. Also, Georgie offers Veronica a shoulder to cry on when she’s dumped by her boyfriend.

Mom - "Skippy and the Knowledge Hole" (CBS, 9:00PM ET/PT)
Christy finds it challenging to quit smoking, while Bonnie helps Tammy prepare to take the GED test.

Fam - "Drunk in Love" (CBS, 9:30PM ET/PT)
During their engagement party, Clem and Nick are both shocked to learn that the other has been keeping an embarrassing secret about how they met.

Brooklyn Nine-Nine - "The Honeypot" (NBC, 9:00PM ET/PT)
Jake and Holt clash over the merits of a new hire in the 99th precinct. Terry, Amy, Rosa and Charles try to do something about the cluttered bullpen.

Will & Grace - "The Pursuit of Happiness" (NBC, 9:30PM ET/PT)
Grace (Debra Messing) is enlisted by Malcolm (guest star Alec Baldwin) to help him win back Karen's (Megan Mullally) affections. Will's (Eric McCormack) flirtation with his co-worker, Paul (guest star Barrett Foa), takes a turn when details about Paul's home life put Will in an ethical dilemma. And Jack's (Sean Hayes) run-in with Zusanna (guest star Andrea Martin), the sister of his former acting teacher, reignites Jack's passion for performing.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of February 18

Thursday, February 21

  • Ken Jeong (Dr. Ken/Community) - Catch Ken on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:34pm on NBC. He will also be on ABC's Good Morning America sometime between 7-9am and on Strahan & Sara at 1pm.
  • James Spader (The Office) - James stops by Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Kal Penn (Deadbeat/We Are Men) - Kal visits The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Chris O'Dowd (Family Tree) - Chris is a guest on The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Mark Duplass (Togetherness/The Mindy Project/The League) - Mark appears on Comedy Central's The Daily Show with Trevor Noah at 11pm.
  • Reba McEntire (Reba/Malibu Country) - Reba drops by Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
  • Morris Chestnut (Out All Night) - Morris is a guest on Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
  • Wendi McLendon-Covey (The Goldbergs/Rules of Engagement/Reno 911!) - Wendi chats on The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
  • Finesse Mitchell (A.N.T. Farm) - Finesse is a panelist on The Wendy Williams Show, so check your local listings.
  • Craig Ferguson (The Drew Carey Show) - Craig is a guest on Rachael Ray, so check your local listings.
  • Bill Pullman (1600 Penn) - Bill appears on Access Live, so check your local listings.
  • D'Arcy Carden (The Good Place) - D'Arcy will be on New York Live on WNBC in New York at 11:30am ET.


New on DVD/Blu-ray (January/February)

Fuller House - The Complete Third Season The Wayans Bros. - The Complete Fourth Season The Game - The Complete Series Step by Step - The Complete Fourth Season What I Like About You - The Complete Fourth Season

01/08 - Family Guy - 20 Greatest Hits
01/22 - Fuller House - The Complete Third Season
01/22 - The Wayans Bros. - The Complete Fourth Season (WBShop.com)
01/29 - Ballers - The Complete Fourth Season (Blu-ray)
01/29 - Crashing - The Complete Second Season
01/29 - The Game - The Complete Series
01/29 - Kidding - Season One
02/05 - Family Guy - Part 1 - Volumes 1-5
02/05 - Family Guy - Part 2 - Volumes 6-10
02/05 - Family Guy - Part 3 - Seasons 10-14
02/05 - First Lady of Television - Betty White Collection (40 rare and acclaimed episodes from her early days in television)
02/05 - Mama's Family - Seasons 1-6 - The Complete Series
02/12 - Rick and Morty - The Complete Seasons 1-3 (Blu-ray)
02/12 - Step by Step - The Complete Fourth Season
02/26 - What I Like About You - The Complete Fourth Season
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest