The musings of a feminist pop culture fanatic

New Series: Partners

From the producers of Will & Grace, Good Morning Miami and Shit My Dad Says comes a new sitcom. Let’s just hope it’s more like Will & Grace and less like Shit My Dad Says, for the sake of us all.

Here’s the basic premise: Joe (David Krumholtz) and Louis (Michael Urie) are besties for the resties. They’ve been friends since childhood and have developed an incredibly close friendship. Some might envy them for their closeness. Some might find them certifiable and weirdly co-dependent. They’re best friends and co-own an architecture firm. Joe is straight and dating a jeweler named Ali (Sophia Bush). Louis is gay and is dating a Jewish doctor (who is actually a Presbyterian nurse, but Louis swears he’ll get promoted) named Wyatt (Brandon Routh). Joe is the level-headed one of him and Louis, while Louis is the wacky guy and source of most of their hijinx.

Joe has been dating Ali for a while. He is apparently a total commitment-phobe and Ali gave him a “play me or trade me” ultimatum. Louis is apparently a stereotypical gay person who does not understand any of this fancy sports speak. Okay, I’m clueless when it comes to nearly anything to do with sports and even I can figure out what that means. Translation: She wants to get married. Joe doesn’t think he’s ready to get married. Louis tells him to “go with his gut,” after telling him to ignore his head and his “schmekel.” He decides that he’s going to break up with her. However, when he gets there to actually end the relationship, she tells him that she doesn’t want him to do anything he doesn’t want to. At that moment, he decides his gut is telling him to propose, so that’s what he does.

On to the next morning, Louis is still under the impression that Joe and Ali broke up. At their yoga class, Louis tells Ali that Joe was going to break up with her. Cue the wacky hijinx. Joe gets mad and “breaks up” with Louis. Louis goes to talk to Ali. Joe talks to Wyatt. Everyone kisses and makes up because this is a sitcom and it’s only the first episode.

Look, this isn’t the most original concept. Even though buddy comedies have been done like this in a million different ways, each one has the potential to be unique and memorable. It had its bright spots, though. There’s no denying that Krumholtz and Urie have great chemistry. Both of them have fantastic comedic timing. Routh is great at playing the straight man to Urie’s craziness. In my opinion, the weak spot is Sophia Bush. Granted she has been on One Tree Hill for the past decade and anyone could forget how to act after being on that show. Several of her line deliveries were extremely stilted and she really can’t hold a candle to Urie.

The writing is really snappy and has terrific potential. The biggest thing the writers and actors need to do is take the energy down one or two notches. After 30 minutes, I was exhausted. It reminds me a lot of New Girl’s first few episodes last year. The writers turned Zooey Deschanel’s adorkable manic pixie dream girl-ness up to about fifteen. A few episodes later, Deschanel was much calmer and the show got a lot better. As fantastic as Urie is, he needs to tone it down. A lot of that will come as the writers and actors get more comfortable with the characters. The show will find its groove and I think it has potential to be a big hit. I’m certainly going to be tuning in every week.

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