TV review: Underrated "Review" is one of TV's best

Jesse Tigges, Columbus Alive

"Review" was one of the most unexpected comedies last year, as it turned out to be both hilarious and one of the smartest concepts on television. The format of following "life reviewer" Forrest MacNeil (Andy Daly) through the various misadventures he traversed while acting out real-life experiences - often cruel, painful and/or criminal activities - was refreshing and brilliant.

Season 1 had Forrest tackling stuff like divorce, going to space, making a sex tape and even being a racist. As you can imagine, reviewing these often resulted in extremely negative outcomes for Forrest - and occasionally his wonderful co-host A.J. Gibbs (Megan Stevenson).

What was so amazing about the format of seeing Forrest "review life" was the two to three segments per episode each packed a ton laughs into a small window. But it didn't end there, as Forrest's foils began to snowball in to a living nightmare.

"Review" still hasn't reached a level of hype equaling it's excellence - and it's gained far less notoriety than shows like "Inside Amy Schumer" and "Key & Peele" in Comedy Central's current stable of excellent comedies - but Season 2 does have certain expectations to live up to.

Thankfully, the Season 2 premiere shows "Review" is continuing its run of excellence. I don't know if anything can live up to that first season, particularly the "Pancakes, Divorce, Pancakes" episode, but this opening episode ("Brawl, Blackmail, Gloryhole") is very strong.

I wasn't sure if "Review" needed any more than those stellar nine episodes from Season 1. But the premiere explains that Forrest - after ending last season in a dark place - has found a renewed dedication to his work.

I didn't know if simply resetting everything by Forrest going back to the thing that virtually ruined his life would work, but the premiere does very well. Even though it carries over some of the themes - Forrest not realizing how his actions are extremely detrimental to others, especially those he cares for - it's interestingly executed.

Plus, I imagine more inventive (and hilarious) tragedies on the horizon. I can't wait to see what those will be. Five stars indeed.

Photo courtesy of Comedy Central


10 p.m. Thursdays on Comedy Central

4 stars out of 4