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Melissa McCarthy is undoubtedly one of the funniest people on the planet and we’ve been fans of her ever since. Gilmore girls. We also love her husband, Ben Falcone, who has played all sorts of good guys over the years. In recent years, they have collaborated on many projects, many of which were not stellar. It has always been difficult to understand why. Then we saw the first couple of episodes of their new Netflix series. God’s Favorite Idiotand we finally got it.

Initial shot: suburban area; a tiny storm cloud makes its way over one house. Harry Styles’ “Sign of the Times” plays in this house.

Essence: Clark Thompson (Ben Falcone) is the definition of a “nice guy”. He lives a fairly simple life, doesn’t drink and has a couple of cats. When he leaves his house to see where one of his cats has gone, a tiny rain cloud releases lightning that strikes Clark. It is noteworthy that he immediately gets up and is not even burned.

The next day, Emily Luck (Melissa McCarthy), one of his IT company colleagues, drives into the office on her upgraded scooter and tells co-workers Moshin (Usman Ally), Wendy (Ana Scotney) and Tom (Chris Sandiford). ) that she was in the office last night and saw Clark glowing. Oh, and she may have been drunk beforehand. Of course, they don’t believe her.

They intended to obtain evidence; Tom even goes so far as to directly ask Clark while he poops in the bathroom. Meanwhile, Clark has developed a deep crush on Emily and feels like he missed his chance to ask her out. But he tries again in the break room despite his general awkwardness, “Sign of the Times” accidentally playing on the Alexa device, and their ineffectual boss Frisbee (Steve Mallory) trying to settle one of the many disputes between Emily and Tom. Curious to see Clark glow again (and because “he’s got a good can”), Emily agrees.

Their date, of course, gets off to an awkward start when Clarke says he doesn’t have a game; Emily likes that fact about him. Suddenly, as he explains to the waitress why he wants the chicken, he starts glowing again with “Sign of the Times” playing in the background. Let’s just say Emily doesn’t have to prove it anymore.

God's Favorite Idiot
Photo: LISA TOMASETTI/NETFLIX

What series does this remind you of? God’s Favorite Idiot It has Bruce Almighty feel it, filtered through one of the films that McCarthy and Falcone made together, like Sole of company.

Our opinion: One of the hallmarks of McCarthy and Falcone’s collaboration is that Falcone tends to give his wife a lot of space to handle her “Melissa McCarthy business”, i.e. physical acts, improvisational lines, and generally funny behavior. This has always been a fluke, because as funny as McCarthy is, Falcone seems unable to resist the temptation to let her go before anything about her character can be established. This is the problem we see with God’s Beloved Idiot, created and written by Falcone (MADtv’Michael McDonald directed the episodes).

In his first scene, McCarthy bursts into her office to talk about the glowing Clark, how she snorted a blowjob this week and not that night, how she drugged herself bad, and how she hates Tom. . It was all in the first three minutes of the scene, and there was nothing funny about it. At this point, Emily (who changed her name from “Emily” due to the movie Amelie, which she never saw) is a series of jokes, not a character. It’s not until we see her bonding with Clark in the second episode that we get a sense of who she is, and it seems like Clark’s cute nature is slowing her down to a real character.

On the other hand, the nature of Falcone’s character Clark was established from the beginning, and this is highlighted in the second episode when he takes a schwitz with his father Gene (Kevin Dunn), which he considers to be one of his “hobbies”. His character is fairly well known in the second episode, when an angel named Chamuel (Yanick Truesdale) visits him and Emily to tell him that he has been chosen to protect the planet from the Devil (Leslie Bibb).

Everyone else seems to be here to be Clark and Emily’s Greek choir, and that’s fine with us. We hope the story picks up as the two of them become more involved in fighting the forces of evil, and that it’s more fun how each of them reacts than McCarthy’s riffs.

Sex and skin: Not in the first two episodes.

Parting Shot: After Clarke stops glowing, Emily takes a sip of one of her “tiny tequila shots” and says, “I knew it!”

Sleeping Star: Costume designer Damir Peranovich dresses up McCarthy in fun outfits: colorful, wide ties, high-waisted patterned trousers and big fashion glasses. This obviously speaks to Emily’s bold personality, but they give McCarthy an air that stands out from most of her recent roles.

Most pilot line: “Frisbee! Look right at Tom and tell him to fuck off! Man if we said it our Boss, right after that we were packing our booths.

Our call: THEN, at least for a few episodes. We are still not sure about God’s Favorite Idiot get better or just become a train wreck. The second episode definitely gave us indications that he would try to make McCarthy’s character something more than improv. We just hope the laughter starts as the characters get deeper.

Joel Keller (ur.@joelkeller) writes about food, entertainment, parenting, and technology, but doesn’t kid himself: he’s a TV junkie. His articles have appeared in the New York Times, Slate, Salon, Rolling Stone.com, VanityFair.comFast Company, etc.

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