PERFECT COUPLES “Pilot” Advance Review


NBC is breaking out a new half hour comedy for its midseason Thursday night lineup. Perfect Couples premieres Thursday, January 20, 2011 at 8:30 ET. I had the chance to watch an advance review of the pilot episode. I am still not sure how I feel about this one.

Perfect Couples is about three couples and how their relationships differ. First is Dave (Kyle Bornheimer) and Julia (Christine Woods formerly of Flash Forward), a married couple trying to celebrate their anniversary alone in this pilot episode. Among their friends are Julia’s brother, Rex (Hayes MacArthur) and his partner Leigh (Olivia Munn) who get their relationship guidance from spiritual self-help books and therapists. Finally, is Dave’s longtime friend Vance (David Walton) and his girlfriend Amy (Mary Elizabeth Ellis), a highly volatile couple that love to fight and make up, even in the presence of other people.

This three couple premise is nothing new. It is currently seen in both Modern Family (a huge success) and Better With You (not as much loved). After just reviewing this first episode, I would have to say this show is more in line with Better With You. Like Better With You, Perfect Couples started off with a montage of each couple dealing with the woman hogging the entire bed at night. Each man approached it differently from the ultimate spiritual conversation to the spilling of water all over the floor. The approaches were so extreme, they felt almost ridiculous.

The episode jumped in without much background, as most shows do. However, here, it took almost to the end of the episode to figure out who everyone was and how they were related to or knew each other. Once that was determined, it was easier to just try to go with the jokes. However, like the first problem, the jokes did not seem to become funny until the end. While Dave and Julia tried hard to play the every day nothing bothers them couple, the other four actors seemed to overact their particular roles. Rex was a bit too spiritual absent his apparent drinking problem and Vance was way too angry for no identified reason.

Despite that, the show was not without funny moments. The best scene is at the end when everyone winds up in one couple’s bedroom. I also found it funny that Rex and Leigh would immediately show up on the scene whenever something happened, almost like they were always waiting outside the door. I also liked how Vance had a dramatic exit song and even had a “Dave betrayed me” playlist on his ipod.

While in the end Perfect Couples seemed to redeem itself, it was rough going at first. I am not sure that this show will survive, let alone on a Thursday night lineup. Obviously, NBC hopes it will snag the accidental viewer by placing it there, but I would not count on the viewer following the show upon its inevitable move to another day and another time slot.

What do you think? Do you plan on watching this show? Had you heard anything about it prior to this? I had not. Let me know if you tune in tonight to Perfect Couples on NBC and what you thought about this new midseason show in the comment section below.

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