Thursday, September 28, 2017

Pilot Review: Me, Myself, and I

Me, Myself, and I (CBS)
Premiered September 25 at 9:30pm

I’ll admit that when I heard about this show and its premise, I wasn’t very impressed. This seems like a premise that’s both been tried before and is overly gimmicky, meaning that the content would be too reliant on the format and suffer as a result. I was pleasantly surprised by this premiere, since I think that it works on the formative moments in Alex Riley’s life and uses smart dialogue to connect each of the events in the three time periods. It’s most interesting to me since I think that “This Is Us” far too frequently does this and leans on it, while the half-hour comedy framing here actually makes it work. The trajectory of this pilot was indicative of its cleverness, starting with a table wedge as a helpful life hack and a prop he opted not to bring to school turning into the revival of his career in the present day, and his chance run-in with the would-be love of his life whose mouth he accidentally spit a mint into many years later. This show isn’t trying to be the best, most inventive show ever, but it manages to be a pretty endearing and enjoyable experience. Young Jack Dylan Grazer is a great fourteen-year-old version of Alex, while Bobby Moynihan of “Saturday Night Live” fame does pretty well as a more comedic iteration, and John Larroquette commands a certain authority as his older, more reserved businessman nearing the end of his career. I was happy to see Allison Tolman from “Fargo” as Alex’s ex-wife and Kelen Coleman from “The Newsroom” as his adult daughter, both well-cast in strong roles. I don’t think I’ll watch more of this show, but I liked this a lot more than I thought I would.

How will work as a series? That’s the question! Will this show’s creative genes wear off in episode two and make its format seem more like a gimmick than anything else? I may just have to check it out to see how it does since I think this concept could actually be decent if its continues to play out like this.
How long will it last? I think my review is a bit more favorable than most, and this show paled in both critical reception and viewership compared to the other big CBS show to launch Monday night, “Young Sheldon.” Whether this show being like another CBS series, “Life in Pieces,” will be a good thing or a bad thing remains to be seen, but I think that this show will just get one full season.

Pilot grade: B+

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