Thursday, November 16, 2017

Pilot Review: Ill Behaviour

Ill Behaviour (Showtime)
Premiered November 13 at 10:30pm

I watch so many shows that it’s fair to assume that I’ll see the same actors at least a few times. It’s rare that there’s an actor I know from just one role, and Chris Geere, so great at playing a terrible person on “You’re the Worst,” fits that bill. I can’t think of a more fitting project for him to star in than what’s being described as a comedy-thriller about two friends who kidnap another friend to forcibly give him chemotherapy. It’s an odd premise to be sure, and one that sort of works given that it’s mainly focused on the comedy angle and not as much on the fact that there are going to be serious repercussions for this illegal act for those who committed it if Charlie somehow miraculously survives. One thing he sort of has going for him is the involvement of the completely crazy Nadia, played by the always excellent Lizzy Caplan. She was more subdued and less funny on “Masters of Sex,” and it’s fun to see her playing this kind of part. I’m also impressed with Jessica Regan as Tess, and I think she provides a good balance for Geere’s Joel. Together, they’re a nutty combination sure to terrorize and likely make Charlie miserable, which could prove entertaining if it’s not too disturbing. This is an experimental format, one that I think could have the potential to work but doesn’t feel like it manages to be either all that funny or all that serious, and as a result not as memorable as it should be.

How will it work as a series? We haven’t really gotten to the “thriller” part of this show yet, just the “really bad ideas.” I’m not sure how this show can possibly end, and I guess it’s all about just how absurd the journey is and whether Charlie actually survives and is happy about the treatment he’s been forced to receive.
How long will it last? This show has already finished airing on the BBC in the UK, and it’s slated to air over the course of just six weeks on Showtime. I don’t see it being something that’s going to continue past that, though I assume it’s always possible that it could be extended. The reviews don’t seem to be too great, and I think it’s likely to be divisive.

Pilot grade: C+

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