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

    Tuesday, June 28

    none scheduled

    Complete TV Listings


    Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows (Week of June 27)

    Tuesday, June 28

    • Simu Liu (Kim's Convenience) - Catch Simu on Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
    • Chelsea Handler (Are You There, Chelsea?) - Chelsea guest hosts Jimmy Kimmel Live! at 11:35pm on ABC.
    • Steve Carell (Space Force/The Office/Come to Papa/Watching Ellie) - Catch Steve on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon at 11:35pm on NBC. He talks about Minions 2 and Minions on the Plaza on NBC's Today sometime between 7-9am.
    • Wanda Sykes (The Upshaws/The New Adventures of Old Christine/Wanda at Large) - Wanda appears on Late Night with Seth Meyers at 12:36am on NBC.
    • Sherri Shepherd (Mr. Iglesias/Trial & Error/Sherri/Less Than Perfect/Suddenly Susan) - Sherri chats with the ladies of The View on ABC at 11am ET/10am CT-PT.
    • Joel Kim Booster (Loot/Sunnyside) - Joel is a guest on The Talk on CBS at 2pm ET/1pm CT-PT.
    • Kym Whitley (Young & Hungry/Animal Practice/Sparks) and Finesse Mitchell (Outmatched/A.N.T. Farm) - Kym and Finesse guest co-host a repeat of The Wendy Williams Show, so check your local listings.
    • Selena Gomez (Only Murders in the Building/Wizards of Waverly Place), Steve Martin (Only Murders in the Building) and Martin Short (Only Murders in the Building/Mulaney/The Martin Short Show) - Selena, Steve and Martin are guests on E!'s Daily Pop at 11am.
    • Carlos (Big Time Rush) and Alexa PenaVega (Ruby & the Rockits) - Carlos and Alexa are guests on PIX11 Morning News on WPIX in New York at 9:40am.
    • Kim Fields (The Upshaws/Living Single/The Facts of Life/Baby, I'm Back) - NBC's Today catches up with Kim in the 9am hour.


    New on DVD/Blu-ray (March-June)

    Brooklyn Nine-Nine - The Complete Series (Blu-ray) Head of the Class - The Complete Fourth Season Becker - The Complete Series (2022 Release) Young Rock - Season One The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet - The Complete Season One

    03/08 - Brooklyn Nine-Nine - Season Eight
    03/08 - Brooklyn Nine-Nine - The Complete Series (Blu-ray) (DVD)
    03/15 - Head of the Class - The Complete Fourth Season
    03/15 - The Proud Family - The Complete Original Series - Anniversary Collection
    03/22 - The Honeymooners Specials - The Complete Collection
    03/29 - Rick and Morty - The Complete Seasons 1-5 (Blu-ray) (DVD)
    03/29 - Young Rock - Season One
    04/05 - Up All Night - The Complete Series (Blu-ray)
    04/26 - The Danny Thomas Show (aka Make Room for Daddy) - The Complete Fourth Season
    04/26 - Jackie Gleason TV Treasures - 70th Anniversary Collection (including Honeymooners Rarities)
    05/03 - No Activity - Season Three
    05/13 - The Donna Reed Show - The Complete Seasons 1-5 (Time Life)
    05/31 - Becker - The Complete Series (2022 Release)
    06/14 - Curb Your Enthusiasm - The Complete Eleventh Season
    06/14 - Hacks - Season One (Blu-ray) (DVD)
    06/14 - Rutherford Falls - Season One (Blu-ray) (DVD)
    06/21 - The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet - The Complete Season One / Season Two / Season Three (07/26) / Season Four (07/26)
    More TV DVD Releases / DVD Reviews Archive / SitcomsOnline Digest


    Recent SitcomsOnline.com News Blog Posts

    06/27 - Heartwarming Comedy Series Trying Returns July 22; Retta Is Back with More on HGTV
    06/26 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of June 27, 2022)
    06/25 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Peacock Renews Killing It for Season 2; CBS Sets Fall Premiere Dates
    06/24 - CBS Fall 2022 Premiere Dates; Showtime Greenlights Pilot with Mandy Patinkin and Wife
    06/23 - Peacock Renews Killing It for Season 2; Jack McBrayer's Kindness Show on Apple TV+
    06/22 - Disney Brings American Housewife and More to Syndication; The Bob's Burgers Movie Will Stream on Hulu and HBO Max
    06/21 - HBO's The Rehearsal Premieres July 15; IFC Series Sherman's Showcase Returns in Fall
    06/20 - Jimmy Kimmel Live! Summer Guest Hosts; Solar Opposites Returns July 13 on Hulu
    06/19 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of June 20, 2022)
    06/18 - SitcomsOnline Digest: Donald Faison and Jon Cryer Join NBC Comedy Pilot; Wendy Williams Show Comes to an End
    06/17 - ABC Fall 2022 Premiere Dates; Remembering Philip Baker Hall, Lt. Bookman on Seinfeld
    06/16 - Rob Lowe Netflix Sitcom Rounds Out Cast; New PLL Premieres July 28 on HBO Max
    06/15 - Leah Remini Joins the So You Think You Can Dance Judging Panel; New Dark Comedy Bad Sisters to Debut This August on Apple TV+
    06/14 - HBO Max Renews Starstruck for a Third Season; Max Original Comedy Series from Issa Rae Debuts July 21
    06/13 - Martin: The Reunion Premieres June 16 on BET+; Apple TV+ Renews Musical Comedy Schmigadoon! for Season Two
    06/12 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of June 13, 2022)
    06/11 - SitcomsOnline Digest: First Look at Upcoming Munsters Movie; Schmigadoon! Renewed for Second Season
    06/10 - Disney Channel's Hamster & Gretel Rounds Out Cast; The Muppets Mayhem Adds More to Cast
    06/09 - Hallmark Movies & Mysteries Early Kickoff to Christmas in July; Dirty Daddy: The Bob Saget Tribute Premieres Tomorrow (June 10)
    06/08 - FX Renews What We Do in the Shadows for Seasons 5 and 6, Ahead of Season 4 Premiere; Hallmark Channel Scores in Ratings Even in Summer
    06/07 - Fox Fall 2022 Schedule and Premiere Dates; Eva Longoria Produced Gordita Chronicles Premieres June 23 on HBO Max
    06/06 - Antenna TV Presents The Sunday Special; Apple TV+ Comedy Loot Premieres June 24
    06/05 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of June 6, 2022)
    06/04 - SitcomsOnline Digest: New Beavis and Butt-Head Special and Remastered Episodes with Original Music Videos Headed to Paramount+
    06/03 - The CW Adds More to Summer 2022 Schedule, Including Comedy; HBO Renews Hit Show for Season 4; Remembering Charles Siebert and Seinfeld Producer George Shapiro
    06/02 - Antenna TV's Father's Day Feast Marathon; HBO Max Renews Our Flag Means Death
    06/01 - Showtime Orders New Comedy Series Entitled; CBS Brings in Reality for Summer 2022
    05/31 - Rowan Atkinson's Netflix Comedy Series Lands June 24; CBS's Summer of Ghosts
    05/30 - Memorial Day 2022 TV Sitcom Marathons
    05/29 - Sitcom Stars on Talk Shows; This Week in Sitcoms (Week of May 30, 2022)
    05/28 - SitcomsOnline Digest: First Look at Night Court Reboot Cast; Ellen Comes to an End After 19 Seasons
    05/27 - Birdgirl Returns June 19 on Adult Swim; Eureka! Gets All-Star Cast