Pin It
Favorite

TV | LAST MAN ON EARTH 

Will Forte thrives as a leading man

click to enlarge artsculture6-1.jpg

Last Man on Earth (Fox, Sundays, 9:30 pm) does away with all the detritus of the apocalypse. No zombies, no demons, no leftover corpses or automobile wrecks or post-rapture clothes piles.

Just an empty, lonely playground of a world for Will Forte, the last man on Earth. It's a gutsy premise for a sitcom: For the vast majority of its premiere it's willing to have only a single character, just farting around, talking to inanimate objects. For making it work, credit goes to executive producers Chris Miller and Phil Lord, modern-day Rumpelstiltskins spinning terrible ideas (The Lego Movie, say) into pure gold. Their animation sensibility shines through, with snappy visual gags and perfect timing.

In this area, Forte, also the series showrunner, thrives. An early scene is hilarious almost entirely because of the half-hearted awkward shuffling manner in which a bearded, pantsless Forte shoots out a store window.

Enter Kristen Schaal. Forte's dream come true: Another human! And nightmare: Kristen Schaal! She doesn't want Forte to steal art from the White House or use a neighbor's pool as a giant toilet. Schaal's character has raised some critics' eyebrows — nagging no-fun women are a tired trope — but I see her as actual progress.

Woman on TV are allowed to be funny, usually sarcastic or snarky, but are rarely allowed to be just plain weird and unattractive. But Schaal is gleefully both. It's one thing to chide a man for parking in a handicap spot; it's another to do so when there are literally no handicapped people left who would use it.

Yet sitcoms have a tendency to change rapidly as they age. Four episodes in, the cast of Last Man On Earth has already tripled in size. And the introduction of January Jones, a far more conventional female sitcom character, is a warning that without constant vigilance, the show could slide into hackier, Tim Allen-type territory. The fall from Last Man on Earth to Last Man Standing is shorter than one might think. ♦

Pin It
Favorite

Speaking of Tv

Latest in Arts & Culture

Readers also liked…

Comments


Comments are closed.

Today | Sat | Sun | Mon | Tue | Wed | Thu
Schoolhouse Rock Live! A Musical

Schoolhouse Rock Live! A Musical @ Spokane Children's Theatre

Fridays-Sundays. Continues through Oct. 29

All of today's events | Staff Picks

More by Daniel Walters

  • 'black-and-white Issue'
  • 'black-and-white Issue'

    After 4-2 city council vote, MLK Center will run the East Central Community Center
    • Oct 19, 2017
  • Different Roads
  • Different Roads

    Tim Benn and Kate Burke want many of the same things for northeast Spokane — but have different ways to get there
    • Oct 19, 2017
  • Lane Splits
  • Lane Splits

    The Monroe Street lane reduction has become the defining issue in the District 3 race, but it's not the only one
    • Oct 19, 2017
  • More »

Top Tags in
Culture & Food

last word


Culture


for your consideration


MUSIC


BEER


© 2017 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation