Last night at 8:30pm I watched the second installment of NBC’s Committed. Committed is a romantic comedy that NBC hopes will become its next “Friends.” I saw the promos for the show since the late part of November 2004 and I must say I was intrigued.
Josh Cooke plays the leading male as Nate Solomon while Jennifer Finnigan plays the leading lady as Marni Fliss. The pilot show that debuted earlier this week begins with Nate and Marni as 20 something singles living in New York trying to find the perfect mate. Nate and Marni accidentally end up on a blind date together where they hit it off. They soon realize that they are each on the wrong blind date and that Nate had accidentally picked up the wrong person, Marni. As stereotypical plots go you can kind of figure the rest out on your own… they each return back to their correct blind dates and hate the experience and then end up dating each other a few nights later.
The shows writers try to spice things up by making Nate very neurotic and Marni as very compulsive and awkward. This is cute and entertaining for the first five minutes of the show but then this is overdone. Somehow it’s become cool to be mentally ill in television; more like its cool, hip, and fashionable to be mentally ill in society! I’ve noticed a ton of shows have gone the mentally ill route – look at Monk, Seinfeld and Will and Grace to name a few. Committed seems to be just reusing some “Something About Mary” discarded scripts.
All is not lost though; the show has one edgy and entertaining factor: Darius McCray who plays Bowie James. Bowie James plays a black man that is friends with Marni. Nate is extremely uncomfortable around Bowie who appears as the only person of color in the show. So how is this entertaining you ask? Bowie is not only black but he is in a wheelchair. That is where the true raw and witty humor of the show comes in. The show has so many borderline inappropriate handicapped jokes that I laugh so hard I forget to breath. Committed has more handicapped humor than any show I ever seen! Though “Becker” was a show that had its share with the black blind gentleman, Committed takes things to a whole new level.
Tom Poston who is best known from “Newhart” plays a clown that lives in Marni’s closet. Newhart was one of my favorite shows and seeing Tom play the Clown gives the show a slight Newharty feel. The clown role does add an entertaining dynamic to the show.
While I am not completely into the Nate and Marni mental illness love, I am hooked into the show by the handicapped humor. I have already Tivo(ed) the show and hope that Committed continues to roll out the sharp situational handicapped comedy. I encourage everyone to watch it just once and if you like the show Scrubs I am fairly certain you’ll enjoy watching Committed as the style of humor is similar.