Tuesday, April 30, 2019

TV Tuesday: The Other Two

I usually watch a TV show on my own at lunchtime on weekdays, but sometimes I don't have time for a full hour show and just want a brief respite of comedy in 30 minutes (or less). My favorite podcast, Pop Culture Happy Hour, mentioned a new show on Comedy Central, The Other Two, so I gave it a try and am really enjoying it. It's a fun comedy that also is also insightful, very clever, and full of heart.

The premise is that an adorable thirteen-year old boy made a music video that went viral and now the whole world is going crazy over ChaseDreams ala Justin Bieber. But the show isn't about Chase. The title refers to his two older siblings, Brooke (played by Heléne York), a former dancer, and Carey (played by Drew Tarver), an aspiring actor and current waiter, and the effects of their little brother's newfound fame on them. Molly Shannon, of Saturday Night Live fame, plays their mother who is a bit ditzy but really cares about her kids and is getting swept up in Chase's fame. Ken Marino plays a goofy, inexperienced manager with dollar signs in his eyes, and in later episodes, Wanda Sykes is added to the cast as a hilarious publicity manager. Each 30-minute episode is titled about a different milestone in Chase's career, while the action really focuses on his two kind but hapless older siblings. For instance, when ChaseDreams releases a sweet new music video with the lines, "My brother is gay, and that's OK" (cleverly titled Chase Gets the Gays), Cary's life is suddenly thrust unwillingly into the spotlight. A few episodes in, Brooke becomes Chase's personal assistant.

I am loving this show! It is funny but also very clever in its portrayal of our fame-hungry, social media-driven society. It's not played just for laughs, though. With each episode and each new set of challenges, both Brooke and Cary begin to grow a bit, learning to respect themselves more, and, as young adults, trying to figure out what they really want out of life. As you can imagine, Molly Shannon is great in her role as the mom, as she, too, comes out of her shell and starts to find herself, as her young son's career skyrockets. It's a warm, fun, intelligent show about coming of age in our crazy world today, in the shadow of a sibling's spotlight.

NOTE: As with most Comedy Central shows, this one can sometimes be explicit in terms of language and sexuality. 

I've watched eight of the ten episodes in season 1 so far and want more! I've been watching it On Demand, where all episodes are still available. It is also available on Comedy Central's website, though only the first episode is free to all - you can see the other nine by signing in with your cable, TV, or satellite provider. You can also stream it on Amazon for $1.99 an episode or $16.99 for the season (or for the same prices on YouTube).

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