Review: Four in the Morning (Canada: CBC)

Don't stay up for this one

In Canada: Fridays, 9/9:30NT, CBC

Were it not for the awkward scheduling of aircraft, 4am would be a time long since lost to me. To be honest, staying up after 10pm is hard enough these days and if we make it midnight, we feel like we’re as street as Idris Elba.

4am is a time for young people.

You can certainly tell this from Four in the Morning, CBC’s new alleged comedy show, in which two young couples talk about the kind of things in the kind of way over-educated young people straight out of college do at 4am in the morning. 

An alleged piece of ‘magical realism’ – as clear a sign it’s written by gits as if it had a purple ‘BANTER!’ logo stamped on its title sequence – it’s little more just this horrendous chat, arch dialogue that’s so self-satisfied, it probably thinks it’s just solved the problem of world peace while simultaneously creating bons mots that will endure the aeons like granite. Characters with implausibly twattish names like ‘Bondurant’ (“A manically intense, always well-intentioned, singularly focused trumpet player”) and ‘Mitzi’ monologue at one another and have Tarantino-esque conversations about conversations with psychic pigs. They talk about their love of jazz and quote at each other, while playing for one another’s boyfriends or girlfriends, or grouching about the state of the world and their lives. They visit late night fooderies that sell gorilla meat and throw bricks through any number of apparently unsecured Canadian buildings’ windows.

They do all of this without realising they’re being incredibly annoying. Because ha, ha! They’re young people.

The show, which has a ‘micro budget’ of CAN$300k per episode, feels like so much student improv, the kind of thing put on in so many fringe theatres to an audience of seven, mostly friends of the cast and crew. And to be fair, Four in the Morning is probably perfect for annoying, over-educated young people who love the sound of their own opinions at four in the morning.

But for everyone else, it’s yet another Canadian comedy show that’s terminally short on laughs.

  • JustStark

    I liked the 'I can count to this many' joke. Other than that, entirely humour-free.

  • JustStark

    Okay so my test of this new 'spoiler' function from Disqus was successful on the comment thread but actually appears more prominent on the home-page.

    That's kind of… what's the opposite of good, again?

  • Chamelon

    I totally agree with the previous review posted. I thought it was pretty much the worst tv show I have seen in a very long while. So self-aware, so “aren't we edgy and cool”, so unrelatable in every way. I'm sure CBC thinks it is being very cutting edge with this show, but it has created something with absolutely no soul, no heart, no humour, and just a lot of annoying, “look at me I'm acting” characters. It's difficult to feel any kind of interest in or affection for the characters. I felt absolutely nothing for any of them. The character of Bondurant in particular is difficult to watch for more than 5 seconds; this is not acting. Go back to the drawing board, CBC, and give us a show that we can actually care about the characters.

  • mec os

    you are the second reviewer to describe this as fringe theatre.

  • Unhelpful? I never even knew there was a new spoiler function. Maybe they're keeping it quiet until it actually works?

  • Then it must be so!

  • Thanks for dropping by. And I, in turn, agree with everything you've said, too. It's trying to be clever and using its brain (as best it can), but forgetting to have heart

  • JustStark

    Can't remember where I saw the announcement but it was about this:

    Which would, you know, be nice if it worked.

  • Ah. Basically, the trouble is that there's the 'classic' Disqus API and the new Disqus API. The spoiler cloaking is part of the new API and hasn't been retrofitted into the classic Disqus API. The comment thing at the bottom of the page uses the new API, but the Recent Comments thing at the side uses the classic Disqus API and there's no replacement that uses the new API yet.

    Basically, I'll have to read the Disqus API documentation and see if I can build one myself. Sigh.

  • JustStark

    Bloody computers.

  • Indeed. But I've had an idea that just might work

  • fred

    Check out the 2nd Ep, I'm not promising it's any better, but it's trying to do a “Man Seeking Woman” type gimmick! Which seems a strange change in format! I'll admit the only reason I watched was for Katy (Michelle Mylett) from “Letterkeny”, *that's what I appreciates most this show*

  • I normally try to do the first three episodes of every series, unless the first episode is heinously bad, but the schedules are starting to fill up and I've got a whole load of Narcos to get through. You never know, though.

    Thanks for dropping by and the recommendation!

  • fred

    Sure, it 21 minutes you might never get back, but normally you get the basic the gist of a show in episode 1; some shows are retooled for subsequent episodes, but to suddenly add a dominant “science fiction” (probably not the right definition) plot, seems odd!

  • Pingback: The Medium is Not Enough TV blog()

  • Pingback: The Medium is Not Enough TV blog()