Friday, March 25, 2005

they must mean the royal "everybody"




You know how at the end of some movies they say “based on a true story”? Well that is supposed to tell you it’s not actually that true story.

Now I see why at the end of each episode of “Everybody Loves Raymond” the first thing to come up on the screen is “based on the comedy of Ray Romano”. It’s obviously meant to tell you it’s not actually comedy.

I had seen only excerpts before, so in the spirit of fair play (and nothing else being on TV) I decided this evening to sit through an entire episode. My suspicions were more than confirmed.

Oh my good Lord, how can a program meant to evoke laughter be SO not funny???

If you try to dive into the deep mysterious depths that are the main characters, it will be like jumping off a springboard into a paddling pool.

First there’s Ray – the husband, the father, the guy who tries to do his embarrassing guy stuff without his wife knowing.

Next there’s the wife, who of course is doing all the REAL work running the home and bringing up the kids. She can’t understand her silly husband at all, yet she consoles herself with the fact that at least he’s good for bringing home the money. Oh, and of course, she loves him at the end of the day no matter what foolish things he says or gets up to.

THEN there’s the big dopey brother who’s always saying big dopey things, which, believe it or not, are really thinly veiled pearls of wisdom which show Raymond the way to each instalment’s predictable moral conclusion.

THEN there’s the parents. Dad to Mom: “You’re ugly.” Mom to Dad: “You’re bad in bed.”

Don’t get me wrong; I’m sure this format was very funny back when Jackie Gleason did it. And Archie Bunker. And Bill Cosby. And Fred Flintstone. And all the others.

The really scary thing? CBS is currently airing the NINTH (count ‘em) series, each of wish has 24 episodes. I’m afraid to do the math.

One thing I’d love to do is watch an episode in the USA and see what ads come up in the breaks to learn exactly what demographic these (9 x 24, I'm still afraid) half-hours of trash are aimed at.

Maybe THAT would make me laugh.
I guess comedy is in the eye of the beholder.

5 comments:

shandi said...

Here ya go....
1. Beer Commercials
2. "Chaser" hangover rememdy
3. Hemorrhoid creme
4. Erectile Dysfunction Pills
MOSTLY

Mike Todd said...

Haha -- great post, JL, and great comment, Shandi. Kara freakin' hates that show. I don't care much one way or the other, but she acts like Ray beat up her dad when she was little. You're right - must be the royal everybody.

Michèle said...

I have watched this program before, but found it so aggravating that I couldn’t enjoy it. I think they’re trying to sell the idea that we are selfish if we don’t let people treat us like crap.

The husband lies to his wife because he loves her . . . The in-laws impose continually because they love the family . . . The big brother lives with his parents (in earlier episodes) because, even though he is gainfully employed and should be living his own life at 40+ years old, he has to show his parents how dependent he is on them (dependence=love).

I guess I must come from the most unloving family. We are honest, we respect each other, and we each live our own lives so that our happiness isn’t dependent on what everybody else is doing. Can you imagine judging a person’s love based on whether or not they like your pasta fagioli? That’s American television for you. That’s why I watch so little of it . . .

fairygirl701 said...

It is really creepy to me when Ray and Debra start talking about "doing it". Ugh! Sex talk b/w those two is just nasty to me. Oh, and have you ever noticed how the kids are invisible? i swear they are NEVER on the show!!

JL Pagano said...

LMAO @ Shandi - pretty much what I expected!!!

I did a bit of surfing and found a lot of posts on messageboards by people who explained in great detail why they loved the show...how many different online personas can Mr Romano have????