Kidding (Showtime)

Kidding

Kidding (Showtime) – Premieres 9th September – Renewed

A comedy drama that follows Jeff Piccirillo, a legendary childrens tv entertainer, a year after the death of one of his sons. Where after an appearance on Conan, pitched the idea to his producer/father Seb that he should do a show that talks about death.

Seb shoots down the idea fearing that Jeff still hasn’t dealt with the loss and could set him down the path of a breakdown. After the rebuttal Jeff head to his old family home where his surviving son and separated wife live, and discovers that his son still blames his mother for the loss, and that he believe his wife still having trouble dealing with the loss.

While this is going on, Jeffs sister and show puppeteer, Dierdre finds out that her husband is having an affair with their next door neighbour. After her daughter tells her that she saw the neighbour tugging her dad off when she was taking in the groceries.

The next day, Jeff again pitches the idea on a show on death again, where Seb acquiesces, then after filming, Jeff goes to watch the show on tv only to find that it wasn’t aired. So in retaliation hacks off some of his hair, and buys the house next to his old family home where he finds out that his wife is seeing someone.

While this is in heavily on the drama side of a comedy drama, is does have a couple of small moment of lightness in it. Though the impending breakdown of Jeff makes it something you want to check the next episode for. It’s a solid opener.

6.0/10

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Who Is America (Showtime)

WhoIsAmerica

Who Is America (Showtime) – Premieres 15th July

Comedy where Sasha Baron Cohen manages to dupe government officials, active political supporters and members of the arts into interviews with his over-the-top characters, as they actively take part in some ridiculous opinions, to almost to the same level of the Brass Eye peado-geddeon episode.

While a couple of the characters don’t hit the mark that often, and possibly overlap with some of Cohen previous characters. When it does work it becomes very funny, surreal and more than a bit worrying to see how far some folks go along with it.

It’s worth a watch.

5.8/10

Just Another Immigrant (Showtime)

JustAnotherImmigrant

Just Another Immigrant (Showtime) – Premieres 8th June

Comedy documentary/mockumentary where stand up comedian Romesh Raganathan has decided to try a crack the US, by booking the 3000 seater Greek Theatre with no plan on how to fill it.

Having head over a few weeks before his family join him, Romesh and his uncle Rags go about LA trying to raise Romeshs’ profile. As well as trying to sort the living arrangements for his family when they finally arrive.

The show is a bit similar to the old comedy show La La Land, where the industry people that Romesh meets are on the more left field side. Leading to some weird exchanges where both sides don’t know what to make of each other. It’s a decent bit of laid back comedy.

6.1/10

Patrick Melrose (Showtime)

PatrickMelrose

Patrick Melrose (Showtime) – Premieres 12th May

A drama that follows the titular Patrick Melrose, a chap from upper class stock who is addicted to every drug under the sun, which stemmed from him dealing with his traumatic childhood.

It begins with Patrick receiving a phonecall informing him that his father, who was behind the childhood abuse, is finally dead. Which Patrick celebrates by having a lovely bit of Heroin. After talking to his friend about the news Patrick then has to head off to New York to collect his fathers cremated remains to bring back to London.

Before heading out he comes to the decision that now his father has gone, it’s time to quit the drugs. Which becomes increasing difficult upon his arrival, leading him to fall off the wagon in a epic fashion. After recovering from his session, Patrick arrives back at London knowing he’s reached rock bottom and needs help getting sober.

As an opening episode it does go along at a decent pace, though the fact that Patrick is pretty dislikable doesn’t give you any real reason to want to keep watching. All together it ends up being a bit of a trek to get through.

4.0/10

Our Cartoon President (Showtime)

OurCartoonPresident

Our Cartoon President (Showtime) – Premieres 11th February

Animated comedy that follows the adventures of Donald Trump going about his daily business being a bumbling moron with a twitter account while sort of running the country.

In the show it has Donald watching Fox News where their subject of the day becomes Trumps biggest worry. Leading to his members of staff trying to temper his more outlandish ideas with something more sensible, all while trying to make it seem like his idea.

As this is going on, the Beavis and Butthead take of Don Jr and Eric are in the background trying to make Donalds original idea work, but managing to make the situation worse. Though by the end they manage to get one thing to work leading to Donald achieving his goal of getting the appraisal of Fox News.

For a comedy based on Trump it is better than The President Show, with the caricatures of everyone involved feeling like an amalgamation of everything that’s been done on programmes like The Daily Show, The Opposition and any other late night chat show. That said it the jokes don’t seem to hit as often as they should do and is all a bit predictable.

3.1/10

The Trade (Showtime)

TheTrade

The Trade (Showtime) – Premieres 2nd February 

A documentary that follows the effect of the drug trade in the US. The show follows three different aspects, the Mexican growers of the heroin, a police department in Ohio who are arresting dealers and an addict in Georgia who is try to stop using.

As the show flits between the three stories it shows how the drug trade is the sole source of income for the small Mexican town and how it has changed the area. It shows how the Ohio police are trying to take down the dealers bringing in drugs to the area by arresting lower lever dealers and getting them to reveal their contacts. And it shows how one persons addiction is effecting their family as they try to kick their habit and how it’s wearing the family down each time they relapse.

As documentaries go it’s interesting while having some really bleak moments in it.

5.8/10

The Chi (Showtime)

TheChi

The Chi (Showtime) – Premieres 7th January – Renewed

A drama set in Chicagos south side, where after a man is murdered, the events spawned from the actions of a lad that discovered him leads to a group of individuals crossing paths as they are brought into the fallout.

While the shows pacing is on the slow side, it manages to introduce all the main characters while keeping the main story going along without ever dragging. 

It’s a good solid opening episode.

6.4/10