This week, fans of Parks and Recreation started freaking out due to the show being taken off the air for a few weeks, immediately fearing that their favorite Pawnee inhabitants may soon be canceled, but the real worry should be for Sean Saves the World. With pretty awful ratings, NBC is overloading their Thursday nights in order to give Sean and The Michael J. Fox Show that follows it more of a lead-in of viewers. NBC has put a lot of their comedy hopes into these two former stars of their network, and right now their shows are failing.
In a recent interview, Sean Saves the World star Sean Hayes said that he believes the show is working and that despite bad reviews and its inability to gain viewers, he still believes that “even if I wasn’t on the show, it’d be the funniest sitcom, to me, on the air right now.” Yes, comedy is subjective, but when a show like Sean Saves the World is this devoid of laughs and filled with generic humor, it’s hard to take his opinion. Audiences know that it’s on; they just realize the truth: Sean Saves the World is not a good show.
The interview with Hayes goes on to show that while the idea of creating the show as a single-camera sitcom was thrown around, Hayes wanted to do what was successful. No other factors seem to contribute to the idea besides “if it has worked in the past, it’ll work for us.”
This thought process makes complete sense for Sean Saves the World, as it so strongly feels like it’s just trying to do things that have succeeded in the past. This show clearly has the viewpoint that what isn’t broke shouldn’t be fixed, even though their barometer for success is about two decades old.
“Shut Your Parent Trap” is the most recent example of Sean Saves the World’s ability to just copy from the past, as we get another storyline that is stale and boring in the modern world of television comedy. Stacy Keach shows up as Max’s father, showing that both Max and Sean have the same problem of continually trying to attain parental approval. So both of their parents go on a date together, and Max and Sean drunkenly approach their parents and immediately get their approval.
Along the way, Sean’s mother tries to figure out how to work a cell phone and Sean’s co-workers Hunter and Liz fight over which one of them will have to work over the weekend, but yeah…who cares?
Sean Saves the World is getting slightly stronger, but only because it’s relying more heavily on Thomas Lennon, as Sean seeks approval with his boss. And watching them together does mean thankfully much less of Hayes running around being silly by himself or complaining about his mother.
What’s most frustrating about Hayes’ view of the show is that he doesn’t realize it isn’t very good and most likely the biggest problem is himself. I’ve said it before, but if the show was just Lennon and Echo Kellum, it would actually be pretty hilarious, even laugh-tracked and all. Unfortunately though we’re stuck with Hayes and the show has to deal with his over-the-top behavior and aged humor. Maybe NBC needs to realize if it’s taking a complete rehaul of an entire night of shows to get people to watch Sean Saves the World, odds are it isn’t worth saving.