Do You Need More Weird Loners In Your Life?

Weird Loners (Photo: Michael Becker / FOX)
Weird Loners (Photo: Michael Becker / FOX)

I am trying very hard not to call this show “Weird Longers,” but I can’t make any promises.

Show

Weird Loners, currently picked up for six episodes, airs 9:30pm Tuesdays on Fox. The pilot (“Weird Pilot”) premiered last night, and is now available to watch online.

Premise

Two white men (who are also cousins), a white woman, and a woman of color share two separate halves of a Queens, NY townhouse. The twist? They’re all single, thanks to relationship issues of some variety, while the majority of their peers are married with 2.4 kids and a house in the ‘burbs. (It’s not really a twist, but — okay.)

Lineage

Weird Loners is created and written by the man responsible for The King of Queens (Michael J. Weithorn). Two of the men behind New Girl (Jake Kasdan, Melvin Mar) join him as executive producers. As for the cast, you might recognize Becki Newton (Ugly Betty, How I Met Your Mother), Zachary Knighton (Happy Endings, Parenthood), and Nate Torrence (Mr. Sunshine, Capital One “What’s in Your Wallet?” commercials — yes really). The fourth main cast member, Meera Rohit Kumbhani, is billed as a “newcomer,” but she has previous experience in the role of Hot Girl from the CollegeHumor short “Learning Piano to Get Laid.”

Who is Weird Loners For?

Are you an former, present, or future unmarried urbanite who enjoys physical comedy, can appreciate the spontaneous need for churros, and might someday find yourself in a book club (real or fake)? Then this show is targeting you.

What Works

Near the end of the pilot, the four main characters find themselves on a bench outside a wedding. To cheer up Caryn (Becki Newton), they do a bad lip reading of the proceedings. The writing and acting of that scene made me smile, if only because it reminded me to the NFL Bad Lip Readings that have left me laughing through tears on multiple occasions.1 I also really appreciate Eric (Nate Torrence) and Zara (Meera Rohit Kumbhani). Their individual acting, and their budding friendship on-camera, are the reasons I’ll watch the rest of this show’s six-episode run.

What Doesn’t Work

I enjoy well-done physical comedy, but it just seems out of place, or maybe just overused. For example: after Eric shares the news that his father has passed away, Caryn falls up their townhouse’s shared staircase. While I can appreciate the comedy of falling up stairs, it felt like there should have been a verbal joke or even a visual gag instead.

Also, maybe my barometer for “weird” is a little skewed, but … well, these aren’t weird loners. Eric is a little weird (although I’d argue that silly or fun are better descriptors) and Zara is a bit of a loner, but Caryn and Stosh (Zachary Knighton) are just … dysfunctional is maybe the right word? It’s pretty clear the show is going to be “Caryn and Stosh figure out how to date each other while those other characters are funny in the background.” Honestly, I already can’t wait for the Eric and Zara spinoff (or, for Zara to be fleshed out at all, really).

Verdict

Overall, Weird Loners is a fun, light, and silly comedy that I will probably watch for its remaining five episodes. I’ll recommend it to others as well — the show hasn’t done anything terribly wrong so far, and seems like a good appetizer for the lighter fare we tend to get during the summer. It’s not THE BEST SHOW I’VE EVER SEEN, but it’s good enough.

  1. Duuuucky ducky turkey turkey duck duck duck!  

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