Thursday, March 22, 2012

NBC's Bent is their best sitcom since Community

The first two episodes of NBC's late-season apparent comedy burn-off of "Bent" - starring Amanda Peet and created by Tad Quill (last year's poorly received "Perfect Couples") are in the books and were actually very solid. In a short conversation with MPR's Bob Collins via Twitter last night, he stated that the show's dialogue pacing made something by Aaron Sorkin seem like a slow southern drawl.

To me, "Bent" has an obvious romantic comedy slant to it. The tense romantic chemistry between stars Amanda Peet and the contractor working on her remodeling project -- David Walton -- makes for plenty of awkward and truly funny moments. Throw in the rather adorable and precocious child of Amanda Peet's character played by Joey King and Jeffrey Tambor who stars as David Walton's booze-swilling father who plays piano at an upscale department store while struggling in his dream to become an actor and there are plenty of excellent scenes playing up the sentimental humor and outright gut-busting moments.

"Bent" should be given a true chance. It's time period -- featuring back-to-back episodes stuck at 8 PM C/T on Wednesdays on NBC do the series no favors but NBC also launched a certain single camera sitcom entiled "The Office" in a less-than-favorable Tuesday 8:30 PM timeslot at this exact time of the year with a six episode run for its first season and "The Office" went on to run for at least eight seasons and is still NBC's highest rated sitcom.

"Bent", while not a workplace comedy, could easily be the next relationship-centric single camera comedy to be a cornerstone for NBC while shows like "30 Rock" and "The Office" come to the end of their lifespans.

Check out "Bent" as it sticks to its back-to-back episodes the next two Wednesdays at 8 PM and 8:30 PM C/T the next two weeks.

What others are saying:
Hitflix says:
... It is snappy, and funny enough when it needs to be. It is acutely aware of all the will-they/won't-they clich├ęs and enjoys letting Pete, Alex and Ben be aware of them, too. And it has absolutely terrific chemistry between Walton and Peet, the kind that can't be manufactured — even though I've seen many, many unfortunate series try. It's not perfect, but it's also not particularly bent.…

The New York Times says:
... Sometimes it’s best not to think too hard and just embrace the idiocy. If you’re able to bring that mind-set to “Bent,” a screwy comedy NBC introduces on Wednesday night, you’ll have a pretty good time. …

The Los Angeles Times says:
... it is all very well done. If the characters are not particularly original, neither do they come off as artificial. The dialogue is 75% banter, but it is crisp and tart, and the actors make even the ripostes you can predict sound spontaneous.

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