In the US: Thursdays, 9.30/8.30c, Fox
Forget 60s nostalgia. Forget 70s nostalgia. Forget even 80s nostalgia. Apparently, 1991 nostalgia is where it’s at.
Based on Justin Halpern’s autobiography, I Suck At Girls, Surviving Jack sees a 1991 family getting to grips with changing parenting roles when mom (Rachael Harris) goes to law school, forcing the ex-military doctor father (Christopher Meloni) to have to deal with being more nurturing with his two kids (Connor Buckley, Claudia Lee).
Strangely, Surviving Jack’s 1991 is pretty identical to 2014, the only difference being a lack of Internet, apparently, so I’m not quite sure what the nostalgia is for. But if you ignore that supposed hook, the show’s actually surprisingly good. While a lot of the first episode revolves around Buckley’s trying to deal with the fact that girls now seem to like him but he has no idea what to do about that, it’s quite a nuanced piece. Harris is as reliable as always but Meloni does surprisingly well as a slightly more sensitive Major Dad (see? That’s the kind of 1991 nostalgia we should be getting). It’s all a very male-centric piece, but for once, the men aren’t total dicks, and there’s plenty of laughs in the show.
Definitely one to try.
- April 11, 2014: Third-episode verdict: Surviving Jack (Fox)
A third-episode verdict on Surviving Jack
- April 4, 2014: What have you been watching? Including Endeavour, Vikings, Hannibal, 19-2, Agents of SHIELD and Continuum
What I watched in the week ending Friday 4th April 2014
- February 10, 2015: Review: Fresh Off The Boat 1x1-1x2 (US: ABC)
A review of the first two episodes of ABC’s Fresh Off The Boat
- September 8, 2015: Preview: Lucifer 1x1 (US: Fox)
A preview of Fox’s Lucifer
- February 11, 2016: Third-episode verdict: Lucifer (US: Fox; UK: Amazon Instant Video)
A review of the first three episodes of Fox/Amazon Instant Video's Lucifer
- February 2, 2017: Review: Riverdale 1x1 (US: The CW; UK: Netflix)
A review of the first episode of The CW/Netflix's Riverdale