“One Big Happy” Pile of Crap (review)

My college buddies and I had this thing called a “ride out”. Basically, you do something embarrassing (or have something embarrassing done to you) and you see how long you could ride it out, as they say. The fun of it was seeing how long the person could be uncomfortable without finally deciding to tap out. It was an endurance thing, a humility thing, and a really pointless, stupid thing we’d do when we were bored and or/drunk.

One Big Happy is One Big Ride Out. Unfortunately, I (and my roommates) lasted the entire 30-minute runtime, and we weren’t even drunk. But it was entirely pointless, much like this god-awful NBC sitcom, which premiered last night, and hopefully will die a fiery death before anyone else has to endure its awfulness.

It can’t be that bad, you say. Or, even worse, you saw it, and you liked it, though you’re not sure why you did. And if you are sure why you did (it was funny! you remark) then I can only assume you just recently emerged from a nuclear fallout bunker buried deep below the surface where you had only sugar packets to read for entertainment and the first thing you did upon reentering the modern world is sit down at 9:30 on a Tuesday and turn your TV to NBC just to see if the channel still existed (surprisingly, and unfortunately, it does) and this was the first thing that was on and your remote’s batteries suddenly died and your legs had atrophied from being underground so long that you couldn’t-

Look. I’ll stop berating you if you liked it. It’s your (crappy) opinion. But do us a favor and schedule a hot yoga class for next Tuesday around 9:30 PM for you and all of your friends that also liked it, okay? And don’t set your DVR. Please. The world depends on this show failing.

Maybe a bit of an exaggeration, since there are more terrible things on television (see: anything on E!, TLC, MTV, etc.) But at least those terrible shows have some sort of basis in reality, either that they bill themselves as “reality television” or they show characters that – while awful – might actually exist somehow.

This show says “screw that noise!” to any sort of realism whatsoever, instead trying haphazardly to make up for years of television censorship and standards by throwing every taboo against the wall and seeing if it sticks.

We’ve got a female lead character (already a taboo!) and (gasp!) she’s a lesbian. Oh, and she’s very attractive. No unattractive lesbians here! Only hot, tiny blonde lesbians are okay for this show. Lizzy (yes, that is her real name, can you believe it??) is a lesbian living with her straight male ex-boyfriend, Luke. They’re best friends (awwwww) and they like to bicker and play and have fun and blah blah.

At one point in time they also used to bone. But they don’t, now, because she’s a lesbian. And they’re best friends (AWWWWW). So when they talk about having a baby it’s like, what? But how? She’s gay! And he’s straight! This could never work!

Well guess what, sports fans? We’re living in the future. And we have this thing called “artificial insemination” where a man takes his…okay we all know what it is. Apparently they made some pact to have a kid together if they didn’t have kids by thirty. Now…hold on. Thirty?


I’m fucking thirty and I can’t even think of dreaming about potentially one day having a kid right now. Thirty? What kind of antiquated world is this where two successful people think their lives are a waste at thirty unless they have a terrible little shit running around soaking up their resources? In what reality is that a reality? Clearly this has to be some sort of “she’s dying of cancer” thing or “he’s in the army” or some other bullshit answer, right?

Nope. They made a pact. And pacts are forever. Just like that suicide pact me and Tommy made in 6th grade that if one of us every grew up to be a cynical bastard who wastes time watching crappy sitcoms just to rant about them on the internet that the other would kill…

Oh no, Tommy! Don’t read this!

…so. They decide to have a kid. But they can’t get pregnant (awww) and it seems like all hope is lost. For some reason or another, Luke, a single straight handsome dude, suddenly meets a hot, busty British chick at a bar, and the two fall in love. Like, no joke, fall in love. They actually say they love each other, and it’s been “less than a week” according to shrill, uptight Lizzy. Oh, Lizzy! Why must you be so cynical?? Surely he loves her for more than just her flagrant cleavage or blatant nudity!

Yeah, Prudence (seriously. that’s her name. Prudence) gets naked a lot because she’s comfortable with her body. Naturally, she’s hot and has a huge rack, so of course this is played up for…laughs? Or is it just a marketing gimmick to make straight guys watch the show, even though all the good bits are blurred and you can see that times A MILLION online for free? I honestly have no clue. Someone please help me.

Oh, right, it could be to reinforce that Lizzy is a lesbian (in case you forgot, since they only mention it a gazillion times) and that she finds Prudence attractive, but not in a “I want to fuck her and make Luke jealous way” but more of an “excuse to say the word vagina five times on network television” way. Will there be a love triangle? Probably not. This show wouldn’t pander that hard, would it? …would it?

No, instead you have Lizzy jealous of Luke’s new love interest. Who, yes, is an illegal alien from England (way to skirt around the topic of immigration by making a smoking hot chick from England be the subject, you goons) and who, incredibly, can you believe this? Is about to leave. Sorry, about to “get deported” (awwww). Luke won’t let that happen because, come on, tits, man. So he marries her. In Vegas. Because that’s still a thing, I guess.

Don’t worry: there’s more to her character than just having big tits. She also likes sci-fi. (“Hot girls don’t like Sci-Fi!” shouts Lizzy, making a horribly stereotypical and stupid judgment even though the show is trying to be somewhat progressive by making the main character a lesbian, but hey, nerds are still okay to pick on in today’s overly uptight society, right Liberals?) Oh, and in the final moments of the show she spouts off something about being a surgeon and some other stuff that, I mean, why not just throw it in at the end? We already saw her naked. And we already know she’s hot. So why would we need to know anything else?

Oh, and she moves in. Three’s Company, amirite? Eh? So we have Lizzy, who reveals (shocker!) that she’s pregnant at the end of the pilot, Prudence, who just moved in and got married to Luke, and Luke, who is…window dressing. Rare to have the male be window dressing, which I guess is progressive? But I assume a lot of this whole show will revolve around him, so in a way it’s a show about two women entirely dependent on a man once again, so that’s progressive, isn’t it, NBC? No. I didn’t think so.

Throw in a mixed-race couple that are merely there to drink and make jabs at the characters and there you go. Lizzy, who has the comic timing of a broken prophylactic, is just an annoying, bubbly, shrill character in the vein of so many other uptight, shrill characters. And she’s blonde! Hey, that’s something new! A perky uptight shrill blonde! Who’s ever seen THAT on TV before?!? We have Luke, who jokes that he is a “fighter pilot” at one point but I’m honestly not doubting that was his original profession when the first script came out. And then Prudence, the hot British chick with a big rack, who might “not be as dumb as she looks” even though everything she says is drivel. And the side characters. And a large, expensive-looking set. Oh, and Ellen Degeneres producing.

…what? Ellen produced this crap? One of the funnier voices in talk shows and television over the past decade, a woman who champions progressivism and makes women feel like they’re more than just jokes and stereotypes produced this? How can that be? (looks at IMDB for head writer…sees she wrote for The Ellen Degeneres Show and The Oscars)

Ohhhhhh. That makes sense.

Also, it’s based on an autobiography or something, but who cares. The simple fact is this: writing this review, and watching the show and sitting there, mouth agape, as the horrible jokes came flying at breakneck pace (as in I wanted to break my neck just to stop watching this horrible crapfest) is in itself funnier than anything that was spewed forth during the entire runtime of the pilot.

In short: don’t watch this. Please. It’s time we all just let NBC’s comedy lineup die its eventual death. You had a good run, NBC, but your leg’s broke. I’m sorry, girl, (loads shotgun) but it’s time.

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