Four Reasons You Should be Watching The Last Man on Earth

Title - The Last Man on Earth

The Apocalypse! There are certainly an abundance of programs that deal with the end of the world as we know it. In the fall, I even cataloged the different types in The Popularity of Apocalypse Programs on TV. Not all of these shows are still on TV, but right now I would like to focus on one of them, namely, Fox’s The Last Man on Earth, which airs on Sunday nights at 9:30 pm ET.

While most programs look at the dark side of the apocalypse – and really, can there be a bright side? – such as The Walking Dead or 12 Monkeys, there are a couple of programs that take a more tongue-in-cheek attitude and provide the dark humor side of the end, such as Z Nation and The Last Man on Earth.

Don’t get me wrong – there is nothing funny about the end of the world, but it is possible to portray the gravity and desperation of the situation using humor. Consider the success of the long-running series M*A*S*H, which effectively employed dark humor to portray wartime struggles through the eyes of a mobile field hospital during the Korean Conflict.

Quirky Humor
 

Phil and Todd - The Last Man on Earth

I am a quirky person, and to be fair, aren’t we all in our own ways? – and thus really enjoy quirky programs. This probably explains my affection for British humour such as Monty Python and the works of Douglas Adams! While not quite the same thing, The Last Man on Earth does have its own style of oddball humor. This is not surprising when you consider that Will Forte, a truly quirky comedian, stars in and was one of the creators of the show.

Characters That Push Buttons
 

Phil - The Last Man on Earth

I know that some people, my husband included, find some Saturday Night Live Alums very annoying. However, I am not one of those people. But, I will freely admit that some of the characters on this show, in particular, Will’s character Tandy (Phil), does push my buttons. He is a pathological liar, although sometimes he does lie for the right reasons and shows his heart, but his exaggerated sense of reality can be, for me and no doubt others, frustrating. Certainly, you can see the frustration felt by the other characters on the program! However, to be fair, all of the characters on the program have quirks and annoying habits, not just Phil. But the beauty of it is, the situations he gets himself into with his wild ideas and stories are so ridiculous that they make me laugh!

Daring Episode Choices
 

Pamela - The Last Man on Earth

Most TV shows progress in a linear fashion. We viewers mostly expect a new episode to advance the storyline. Sometimes, though, a program will backtrack or pause to give us some perspective on how the characters got to where they are, or perhaps to tie up a story thread left hanging in a previous episode. The Last Man on Earth takes this one step further and has done two episodes so far in the three seasons it has been on the air that focused almost solely on a totally different character – someone we had not met before who was not a member of the core group. The most recent example of this looks at the beginning of the pandemic and drives home the idea that even the rich and powerful were not immune to the ravages of the disease, not even our top leaders.

Small Time Commitment
 

Carol, Phil and Gail - The Last Man on Earth

There are a lot of programs available on TV to watch. For me personally, Sunday nights are crazy, with four programs airing simultaneously! Yikes! So, I totally understand the reality of needing to choose programs carefully and thoughtfully. The nice thing about The Last Man on Earth is that it is only 30 minutes – less than that if you record it and fast forward through the commercials – making it more accessible when you have a few moments. In fact, I have recently added some 30-minute shows to my watch list just because of that. I can catch up when making my lunch for the next day at work, and since these shows are comedy, it is also a good way to destress before going to bed!

 

Have you been watching The Last Man on Earth? Do you think you might give it a try? I would love to hear your opinions on this program – I really enjoy discussing TV shows with you!