Monday, January 01, 2018

Fox Mid-Season Pilot Review: LA to Vegas - Premieres Tuesday (Jan. 2)

LA to Vegas

LA to Vegas - Tuesdays at 9:00PM ET/PT on Fox
Premieres Tuesday, January 2, 2018 at 9:00PM ET/PT


by Skees

Los Angeles to Vegas: it's a weekend flight that you can take from the first city to the second city every weekend to escape everything and let what happens in Vegas stay in Vegas. Fox's newest sitcom, LA to Vegas, follows a flight crew that makes that trip every weekend, along with some of the familiar passengers who make that trek every weekend and a few guests who come along.

Cast Details:

Kim Matula as Ronnie Messing
Ed Weeks as Colin
Nathan Lee Graham as Bernard
Olivia Macklin as Nichole
Peter Stormare as Artem
Dylan McDermott as Captain Dave Pratman

Kim Matula (Ronnie) is best known for her long-running role in the CBS soap opera The Bold and the Beautiful, and aside from a single episode of How I Met Your Mother, she makes her sitcom debut with this series.

Ed Weeks (Colin) is known for his role of Jeremy Reed on The Mindy Project. He has also appeared in episodes of Royal Pains, House of Lies, and other series in the UK.

Nathan Lee Graham (Bernard) appears in the web series Hug-O-Gram and has also appeared in the series The Comeback, as well as episodes of Scrubs and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.

Olivia Macklin (Nichole) is a relative newcomer to acting who has appeared in HBO's The Young Pope

Peter Stormare (Artem) is a Swedish born actor who has had roles in Sweden and still lives there part-time, and in the United States, he has been seen in series such as Watching Ellie, Prison Break, Weeds, The Blacklist, Arrow, Manhattan, and Longmire, among others.

Dylan McDermott (Captain Dave Pratman) is best known for his role on the ABC series, The Practice. He has also appeared in American Horror Story, Hostages, and Stalker.


Pilot Plot:

"Pilot" (Airs January 2 at 9:00PM ET)

In the pilot, we meet Ronnie Messing (Kim Matula), the airline stewardess who isn't happy with where she is in her professional life. No, she doesn't want to leave behind the life of a stewardess, she wants to leave her job at her current airline on the Los Angeles to Las Vegas flight and get that job with Delta on the Los Angeles to New York flight. When she learns she didn't get it, she takes drastic action, including quitting her job (at least temporarily) and getting involved in a fling with one of the regular passengers, Colin (Ed Weeks) on the flight. Meanwhile, a young couple on the flight is headed to Vegas to elope to escape the big wedding their family has in mind, and that should all go as planned, right?


Analysis:

When I'm watching/reviewing a pilot, I try to look for the good parts of it and focus on those. And I definitely did that with this one as well, but it was hard to find anything good to say about this, as it sort of stinks.

Before getting into what's wrong with it, maybe it is worth pointing out the positives of the series. The individual cast members of the series make up a great are decent actors who could do well on a good TV series with good casting. But that long list of qualifiers already brings up the first problem with the series: it has a cast that doesn't seem to fit in with one another. In watching the first episode, you couldn't really see how they all fit together. So what we've got here is a case of a good cast that seems to be poorly matched.

I also couldn't really tell where the stories are going to go on this series. In the pilot, we got to see Ronnie losing out on a job opportunity and (possibly) opening a new door with a new relationship and the young couple who went to Las Vegas to get hitched. The possibilities with the main cast seem limited, though, as long as they're in the air, so this series will definitely need good guest stars with good stories, and the one in this pilot wasn't all that compelling of a story.

I had trouble finding the laughs in the pilot as well. I've always felt that not all sitcoms need a laugh every minute. In fact, some of the best sitcoms of all time won't necessarily make you laugh out loud at all. But they make up for that with solid storylines, which this series is lacking in what I've seen.

It is worth pointing out that one cast member that I sort of enjoyed that seemed to be underutilized in the pilot was Nathan Lee Graham. I had never really heard of him (although I've seen every episode of Scrubs, which he appeared in one episode, so I've undoubtedly seen him before), but some of the better scenes and somewhat funny (the comedy was still limited by the series itself) scenes came from him. Assuming this series doesn't work out, it would be nice to see him elsewhere, as he seems to have a lot of potential.


Conclusion:

I wish that I could say that I have a glimmer of hope for this series, but I honestly don't. This strikes me as one of those "fly by night" (pun intended) sitcoms that Fox likes to bring out midseason that vanishes within a few weeks and is subsequently completely forgotten about. I'll give it a fair shake and watch it as long as Fox continues to give it a chance, and it's only fair for everybody to do that, but this series came in with low expectations and it seems to have met that standard. Perhaps if the series doesn't stay as "grounded" as the pilot, there is hope for it.

Final Numbers (out of 5 stars):

Watchability: 2/5
Funniness: 2/5
Overall: 2/5

Discuss the show after you watch it on Wednesday, January 2, 2018 at 9:00PM on our message board.

Related Links:


  • Fox.com Official Site
  • TV.com
  • epguides.com
  • Internet Movie Database
  • Wikipedia
  • LA to Vegas Photo Gallery


  • Preview:


    Sitcoms Airing Tonight / Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows

    Tuesday, February 27

    none scheduled

    Complete TV Listings


    Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of February 26)

    Tuesday, February 27

    • David Cross (Arrested Development/Running Wilde) - Catch David on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
    • Sydney Sweeney (Everything Sucks!) - Sydney is a guest on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:35pm on NBC.
    • Joe Manganiello (How I Met Your Mother) - Joe appears on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:35pm on NBC.
    • DulcĂ© Sloan (The Great North) - DulcĂ© is a guest on After Midnight at 12:37am on CBS.
    • Fred Armisen (Los Espookys/Forever/Final Space) - Fred sits in with The 8G Band on Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
    • Kelly Ripa (Hope & Faith) and Mark Consuelos (Alpha House/Hope & Faith) - Kelly and Mark are interviewed on E! News at 11pm on E!.
    • Sutton Foster (Younger) - NBC's Today catches up with Sutton in the 9am hour.
    • Cheryl Hines (Curb Your Enthusiasm/Son of Zorn/Suburgatory) - Cheryl talks about Curb Your Enthusiasm on CBS Mornings some time between 7-9am.
    • Sterling K. Brown (Solar Opposites/Starved) - Sterling talks about American Fiction on ABC's GMA 3: What You Need to Know at 1pm.
    • Tony Danza (Taxi/Who's the Boss?/Hudson Street/The Tony Danza Show) - Tony appears on The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.


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

    The Odd Couple - The Complete Series (Blu-ray) Three's Company - The Official 40th Anniversary Collection Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C. - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)

    11/07 - South Park - The Complete Twenty-Sixth Season (Blu-ray) (DVD)
    11/14 - Leave it to Beaver - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
    12/05 - Father Knows Best - The Complete Series
    12/05 - The Odd Couple - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
    12/12 - The Dick Van Dyke Show - The Complete Series
    12/12 - Looney Tunes Collector's Choice - Volume 2 (Blu-ray)
    12/12 - That Girl - The Complete Series
    12/15 - Letterkenny - Season 11
    12/19 - The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet - The Official Restored Complete Series
    12/22 - Three's Company - The Official 40th Anniversary Collection (includes The Ropers and Three's a Crowd)
    01/09 - South Park - Seasons 11-15 (Blu-ray)
    01/16 - Ghosts (UK) - Season Five
    02/13 - Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C. - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
    02/27 - The Really Loud House - Season One

    That Girl - The Complete Series The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet - The Official Restored Complete Series

    More Recent and Upcoming TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


    Recent SitcomsOnline.com News Blog Posts

    02/26 - Hulu Orders Chad Powers Starring Glen Powell; Netflix's Mindy Kaling Produced Comedy Rounds Out Cast
    02/25 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of February 26, 2024)
    02/24 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Frasier Reboot Gets Second Season; Jimmy Kimmel Hints at End of Talk Show
    02/23 - Paramount+ Renews Frasier for Season 2; Netflix Orders Series from Maid Showrunner
    02/22 - 30th SAG Awards Presenters Announced; Jay Pharoah Heads to Fox
    02/21 - SNL Loads Up for Next 3 Weeks; Tig Notaro Prime Video Special
    02/20 - Brittany Snow to Star Opposite Malin Akerman in Starz Series; Dennis Quaid Joining Paramount+
    02/19 - Rewind TV's 227 on 2/27 Marathon; Dolly Parton's Pet Gala with Special Guests
    02/18 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of February 19, 2024)
    02/17 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Bewitched Reboot in the Works; Paramount+ and Peacock in Merger Talks
    02/16 - TCA Winter 2024 Press Tour: The CW; Girls5eva Season 3 Premieres March 14
    02/15 - TCA Winter 2024 Press Tour: Peacock, Syfy and NBC
    02/14 - Survival of the Thickest Gets 2nd Season; Roma Downey and Ted McGinley Set to Star on Prime Video
    02/13 - Netflix Announces Adam Sandler Special; Tyler Perry Gets Another Series
    02/12 - TCA Winter 2024 Press Tour: ABC, Disney, Hulu, FX
    02/11 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of February 12, 2024)
    02/10 - SitcomsOnline Digest: FX Sticking with Binge Drop for The Bear; Peak TV Declared to Be "Over"
    02/09 - More Stars for Netflix's No Good Deed; ID Premiering Quiet On Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV; Remembering Carl Weathers
    02/08 - Apple TV+ Comedy Series Palm Royale Has Star Power; Katt Williams Gets New Netflix Comedy Special
    02/07 - Hallmark Movies & Mysteries to Rebrand as Hallmark Mystery; Fox Renews Animal Control for Season 3 Ahead of Season 2 Launch
    02/06 - COZI TV's The Many Loves of Frasier Crane Marathon; Netflix Announces Cast for Ted Danson Comedy
    02/05 - Lopez vs Lopez Airing in April on NBC; Apple TV+ New Peanuts Special on February 16
    02/04 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of February 5, 2024)
    02/03 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Curb Your Enthusiasm Really Ending After 12 Seasons; Season Two Premiere Date Set for Lopez vs Lopez
    02/02 - Extraordinary Season 2 This March on Hulu; Great American Family Sets Hosts for Gala
    02/01 - Colin from Accounts Returning to Paramount+; Weakest Link Days of Our Lives Special
    01/31 - Hulu Black History Month Includes Timeless Classics; BUZZR Celebrates Black History Month, Too
    01/30 - Good Times 50th Anniversary Marathons on get.; Password Returns for Season 2 on NBC
    01/29 - Antenna TV's I Wish for an I Dream of Jeannie Valentine's Day Marathon; Malin Akerman Headlining Starz Drama
    01/28 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of January 29, 2024)
    01/27 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Jon Stewart Set to Return to The Daily Show Once a Week; Ted McGinley to Star in Prime Video Series
    01/26 - Antenna TV's Designing Women Super Belle Sunday II Marathon; The Bear Star Hosting SNL