Friday, February 22, 2019

Fri-Yay: The Other Two Is Our First Great New Comedy Series of 2019; Remembering Peter Tork of The Monkees, MeTV to Air Tribute on Sunday (Feb. 24)

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!

The Other Two

by Vincent

A few weeks ago, I talked briefly about The Other Two, a series that premiered on Comedy Central in January. The show is now five episodes into its debut season, so I wanted to look back at it and talk about all of the great stuff it's doing. Frankly, The Other Two is my pick for best new comedy series not just of 2019, but perhaps in several years. It gives me very similar feelings that shows like Broad City, BoJack Horseman and You're the Worst did when they premiered back in 2014 - this is a show that is fresh, new, and offers a great perspective, and could pave the way for the next era of great comedy.

The Other Two is a comedy centered around the two siblings of Chase Dreams, a viral teen sensation whose success stands in stark contrast to his older siblings. The show is funny, lively and has great performances from its entire cast, but it's also an interestingly structured series that's a little bit different than cable comedies of recent years. In some ways, The Other Two is more in line with a traditional sitcom than other recent Comedy Central series such as Corporate and the dearly departed Detroiters. It's not quite as visually inventive as Corporate, or as off-the-wall as Detroiters, going for a bit more of a broad audience. But that's part of what makes the show as special as it is.

The Other Two is going for strong relatability and familial situations that we can all look at and connect our own lives to. In some ways, The Other Two is a family sitcom through and through, and it certainly uses those beats often - and yet, its humor is very much in line with shows like Broad City or BoJack Horseman - self-deprecating, snarky, and creative. We've never really seen a series try to merge the world of a family sitcom with heartwarming values with the sardonic, edgy nature of a cable sitcom, and it's fascinating to see The Other Two straddling those two worlds so well. It's a series I'll definitely be keeping my eye on, and since the show has been a moderate ratings success that has already earned a second season, I'm interested to see if its influence will expand and set a tone for the next crop of cable comedies.


Peter Tork

Musician and actor Peter Tork, best known as the keyboardist and bass guitarist of The Monkees, has died. He died on February 21 at his home in Mansfield, Connecticut, from complications of adenoid cystic carcinoma. Mr. Tork was 77.

The Monkees were formed in Los Angeles in 1965 by Bob Rafelson and Bert Schneider specifically for the sitcom The Monkees. Davy Jones had a long-term contract with Screen Gems to appear in television programs. He was shortlisted for the auditions and identified in advance as a potential star for the series. Daily Variety and The Hollywood Reporter ran an ad to cast the remainder of the band/cast members for the TV series on September 8-10, 1965. Michael Nesmith, Micky Dolenz and Peter Tork were chosen out of 437 applicants. Tork was the last chosen and oldest member of the group.

The Monkees

The Monkees premiered on NBC on September 12, 1966. The series follows the adventures of four young men (The Monkees) trying to make a name for themselves as a rock 'n roll band. Tork played the lovable dummy, a persona he had developed as a folk singer in New York's Greenwich Village. Although the series ran for only 2 seasons (1966 to 1968) and 58 episodes, it remains hugely popular to this day. They received two Emmy Awards in 1967: Outstanding Comedy Series and Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Comedy (James Frawley). Tork directed the episode Monkees Mind Their Manor in 1968.

The band was originally active from 1966 to 1971. They released six albums, four of which went to No. 1 on the Billboard chart. Some of their big hits included: (Theme From) The Monkees; Last Train to Clarksville; I'm a Believer; (I'm Not Your) Steppin' Stone; A Little Bit Me, A Little Bit You; Pleasant Valley Sunday; Daydream Believer; and Valleri. In 1968, they appeared in the feature film Head. They appeared in the 1969 NBC TV special 33 1⁄3 Revolutions per Monkee. The band reunited in 1986 and toured intermittently with different lineups for a number of years. Tork, Dolenz and Jones appeared in The Brady Bunch Movie in 1995.

Peter Tork in Boy Meets World

Tork made guest appearances in several television series. He appeared as himself in a 1995 episode of Wings where he bids against Helen (Crystal Bernard) for the Monkeemobile. He played Topanga Lawrence's (Danielle Fishel) father, Jedidiah Lawrence, in two episodes of Boy Meets World in 1995. His other sitcom guest appearances included California Dreams and The King of Queens. He guest starred as Chris in two episodes of 7th Heaven in 1998 and 2001.

Mr. Tork was a man of many talents. It's sad that we've lost two of the four Monkees. We thank him for the great music and entertainment he brought us during his long career. He will be greatly missed.

Share your memories on our The Monkees message board. View photos in our galleries.

MeTV Remembering Peter Tork

MeTV Network pays tribute to the career of actor annd musician Peter Tork with a special presentation of The Monkees airing on MeTV this Sunday, February 24, beginning at 5:00pm ET/PT through 6:00pm ET/PT.

Peter Tork will forever be remembered as the keyboardist and bass guitarist for The Monkees, the 60s pop/rock band that was formed specifically for the eponymous television show that originally aired from 1966 to 1968. Beloved for the TV show's comedy and music, The Monkees musical hits include I'm a Believer (featured in this MeTV tribute), Daydream Believer, Last Train to Clarksville and Pleasant Valley Sunday.

Tork got his start in the 1960s Greenwich Village folk music scene before landing the coveted role in the TV series that would bring him national stardom alongside fellow band members, Micky Dolenz, Michael Nesmith and Davy Jones. Throughout the series, Tork would write some of their hit songs, including For Pete's Sake, used as the show's closing credits during the second season.

Tork's musical influence continued on even after the show, collaborating with George Harrison on his 1968 soundtrack album Wonderwall. In the late 1980s, The Monkees experienced a resurgence in popular culture and embarked on several reunion tours. After the 2012 death of Davy Jones, the surviving members released Good Times! in 2016 and earned their first Top 20 album in 25 years.

The schedule for MeTV's Tribute to Peter Tork includes:

Sunday, February 24, 2019 (All Times are Eastern/Pacific)

5:00- 5:30pm ET/PT - One Man Shy

A wealthy debutante hires the Monkees to play at her coming out party, where Peter falls instantly in love with her. The girl's rich suitor begins a campaign to show her what a bad boy Peter is and the Monkees reply with their own plot, to show what a fine person Peter is. Monkee music includes Valleri and I'm a Believer.

5:30- 6:00pm ET/PT - The Devil and Peter York

Based loosely on Stephen Vincent Benet's fantasy novel (and the Oscar-winning 1941 RKO movie it spawned) The Devil and Daniel Webster. At Mr. Zero's Pawn Shop, Peter falls in love with a golden harp. Learning Peter has no money, Zero produces a contract, which Peter signs. At the pad, Micky, Mike and Davy remind him that he can't play the harp and urge him to return it. Suddenly, Zero appears in a puff of smoke, and, at his command, Peter plays beautifully. Zero disappears and the boys are immediately booked into a harp act, which is an instant overnight success.


Sitcoms Airing Tonight

Wednesday, May 22

Live in Front of a Studio Audience: Norman Lear’s "All in the Family" and "The Jeffersons" (ABC, 8:00PM ET/PT)
Kerry Washington joins “Live in Front of a Studio Audience: Norman Lear’s ‘All in the Family’ and ‘The Jeffersons,’” the live sitcom special coming from late-night host Jimmy Kimmel and television icon Norman Lear. Washington is set to play Helen Willis in the special, airing live WEDNESDAY, MAY 22 (8:00-9:31 p.m. EDT), on The ABC Television Network. This historic event will take viewers down memory lane, recreating an original episode from each of the Emmy® Award-winning series “All in the Family” and “The Jeffersons.” This legendary night of television will be hosted by Lear and Kimmel, directed by 10-time Emmy winner James Burrows and produced by Sony Pictures Television.

Previously announced stars include Woody Harrelson (Archie Bunker), Marisa Tomei (Edith Bunker), Jamie Foxx (George Jefferson), Wanda Sykes (Louise Jefferson), Ellie Kemper (Gloria Stivic), Will Ferrell (Tom Willis), Justina Machado (Florence Johnston), Ike Barinholtz (Meathead), Sean Hayes (Mr. Lorenzo), Amber Stevens West (Jenny Willis Jefferson), Jovan Adepo (Lionel Jefferson), Anthony Anderson (Uncle Henry), Stephen Tobolowsky (Mr. Bentley) and Jackée Harry (Diane Stockwell).

All About "All in the Family" and "The Jeffersons" (ABC, 9:30PM ET/PT)
After the star-studded live sitcom special “Live in Front of a Studio Audience: Norman Lear’s ‘All in the Family’ and ‘The Jeffersons,’” “Nightline” will take a special look at the cultural and historical significance of the two iconic series. Participants in the live sitcom special along with modern-day comedians, television stars and journalists reminisce about each show’s groundbreaking impact and legacy.“Nightline” Presents “All About ‘All in the Family’ and ‘The Jeffersons’” airs WEDNESDAY, MAY 22 (9:31–10:00 p.m. EDT), on The ABC Television Network.

The prime-time special features interviews with “All in the Family” and “The Jeffersons” creator Norman Lear; host and executive producer Jimmy Kimmel and stars Anthony Anderson, Ike Barinholtz, Jackée Harry, Ellie Kemper and Kerry Washington; comedians and actors Raven-Symoné, David Alan Grier, Lil’ Rel and John Amos; original “The Jeffersons” cast member Marla Gibbs; and journalists Deborah Roberts, Chris Connelly, Marc Lamont Hill and Joe Levy.

What We Do in the Shadows - "The Orgy" (FX, 10:00PM ET/PT)
Tensions run high as the vampires prepare to host the Biannual Vampire Orgy.

Complete TV Listings


Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of May 20)

Wednesday, May 22

  • John Travolta (Welcome Back, Kotter) - Watch John and his daughter Ella Bleu on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
  • Kaitlyn Dever (Last Man Standing) - Kaitlyn appears on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert at 11:35pm on CBS. She also talks about Booksmart on the BUILD Series at 1pm.
  • John Lithgow (Trial & Error/Twenty Good Years/3rd Rock from the Sun) - John stops by Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
  • Beanie Feldstein (What We Do in the Shadows) - Beanie is a guest on Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC. She also talks about Booksmart on the BUILD Series at 1pm.
  • Elizabeth Banks (Scrubs/30 Rock) - Elizabeth visits The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Bradley Whitford (Happyish/Trophy Wife) - Bradley drops by The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Billy Ray Cyrus (Still the King) - Billy Ray appears on The Late Late Show with James Corden at 12:37am on CBS.
  • Logan Browning (Dear White People/Meet the Browns) - Logan is a guest on Last Call with Carson Daly at 1:35am on NBC.
  • Lisa Kudrow (Friends/The Comeback/Web Therapy) - Lisa stops by Conan at 11pm on TBS.
  • Tracy Pollan (Family Ties) - Tracy appears on Watch What Happens: Live at 11pm on Bravo.
  • Eric Stonestreet (Modern Family) - Eric chats with the ladies of The View on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
  • Kevin Hart (The Big House/Undeclared) - Kevin talks about The Secret Life of Pets 2 on NBC's Today sometime between 7-9am and in the 10am hour and on LIVE! with Kelly and Ryan, so check your listings.
  • Tom Hanks (Bosom Buddies) - Tom appears on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, so check your local listings.
  • Jenny Slate (Married/Parks and Recreation) and Patton Oswalt (A.P. Bio/The Goldbergs/The King of Queens) - Jenny and Patton talk about The Secret Life of Pets 2 on NBC's Today in the 10am hour.
  • Ed Asner (Dead to Me/Center of the Universe/Thunder Alley/The Mary Tyler Moore Show) - Ed and his son Matt are guests on Home & Family on Hallmark Channel at 10am ET/PT.


New on DVD/Blu-ray (March/April/May)

Hangin' with Mr. Cooper - The Complete Second Season Alice - The Complete Ninth Season The Wayans Bros. - The Complete Fifth Season Evening Shade - The Complete Collection Perfect Strangers - The Complete Seventh and Eighth Seasons

03/05 - Hangin' with Mr. Cooper - The Complete Second Season (WBShop.com)
03/12 - Alice - The Complete Ninth Season (WBShop.com)
03/26 - The Wayans Bros. - The Complete Fifth Season (WBShop.com)
04/02 - Archer: Danger Island - The Complete Season Nine
04/09 - You're the Worst - The Complete Fifth Season
04/12 - Evening Shade - The Complete Collection
04/16 - The Big C - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
05/07 - Baskets - The Complete Season Three
05/13 - My Three Sons - The Third Season - Volume One
05/13 - My Three Sons - The Third Season - Volume Two
05/14 - The Donna Reed Show - Seasons 1-5
05/14 - Petticoat Junction - Seasons 1-3
05/28 - Perfect Strangers - The Complete Seventh and Eighth Seasons
05/28 - South Park - The Complete Twenty-Second Season (Blu-ray)
More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


Recent SitcomsOnline.com News Blog Posts

05/22 - Los Espookys Premieres June 14 on HBO; NBC's 5th Annual Red Nose Day Special Brings Out the Stars
05/21 - Nightline Primetime Special Profiles All in the Family & The Jeffersons; Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader Premieres June 10 on Nick
05/20 - Comedy Central Heads to the South Side This July; Catch the Big Bang Finale Again Tonight
05/19 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of May 20, 2019)
05/18 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Broadcast Network Fall Lineup at a Glance; Rick & Morty Returns in November
05/17 - Fri-Yay: Big Bang Ends With No Hype?; ABC to Air Farrah Fawcett Documentary
05/16 - The CW Upfront 2019-20: Fall 2019 Schedule; Notes from TBS and TNT Upfront
05/15 - CBS Upfront 2019-20: Fall 2019 Schedule; Remembering Doris Day and Tim Conway
05/14 - ABC Upfront 2019-20: Fall 2019 Schedule; Disney Channel Sets Premiere Dates for Raven's Home and Bunk'd
05/13 - Fox Upfront 2019-20: Fall 2019 Schedule; Antenna TV's Father Knows Best Father's Day Marathon
05/12 - NBC Upfront 2019-20: Fall 2019 Schedule; Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of May 13, 2019)
05/11 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Looking at Sitcom Cancellations Ahead of Upfronts; Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Returning for Interactive Special
05/10 - Fri-Yay: Upfronts 2019: Questions for Sitcoms; getTV Celebrates All in the Family Ahead of ABC Live Special
05/09 - More Pre-Upfront Pick Ups from NBC, ABC and The CW; Fox Schedules BH90210
05/08 - NBC Picks Up 2 Series Before Upfront; FX Gets 2nd Season of What We Do in the Shadows
05/07 - AXS TV's The Very VERY Best of the 70s; Who Do You Think You Are? Returns to NBC with More Celebs
05/06 - Kevin Hart Bounce Series Debuts Tonight; Set Sail with Kimmy Schmidt
05/05 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of May 6, 2019)
05/04 - Pluto TV Adds Special Versions of Popular Viacom Channels; Perfect Strangers to Finish on DVD
05/03 - Fri-Yay: Ramy Gets 2nd Season on Hulu; ABC Orders black-ish and Spinoff mixed-ish for 2019-20
05/02 - Hulu 2019 Upfront; Suits and Spinoff to Air Back-to-Back
05/01 - Fox Gets Unique Fred Savage Series; BH90210 Gets Shannen Doherty for Revival
04/30 - CBS Announces Big Bang Special on Finale Night; Showtime Gets 2nd Season of Black Monday with Don Cheadle
04/29 - Disney Channel's Just Roll With It Premieres in June; Alyssa Milano Launches Podcast
04/28 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of April 29, 2019)
04/27 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Santa Clarita Diet and Wrecked Both Cancelled; Remembering Dallas Actor Ken Kercheval
04/26 - Fri-Yay: Status of Sitcoms on Disney+; Gabriel Iglesias Sitcom Launches June 21 on Netflix
04/25 - Lifetime's Book to Screen Titles in June; The CW Renews Four More for 2019-20
04/24 - MeTV Network Brings Back The Dick Van Dyke Show; The Detour Returns for Season 4 in June
04/23 - Antenna TV's Hazel Mother's Day Marathon; Netflix Celebrates Laugh-In's 50th Anniversary
04/22 - Last Man Standing Renewed for Season 8; NBC Moves Tuesday Series Timeslots