TRAFFIC LIGHT “Help Wanted” Review

TRAFFIC LIGHT “Help Wanted” Episode 13 – Daryl “Chill” Mitchell has one of those faces that you kind of know, sort of recognize and remember, but can’t quite place his name. And sure, I’d seen the House Party movies, but ages ago, and a very forgettable 10 Things I Hate About You, and even the vaguely-funny John Larroquette Show. So he was a dude I sort of knew, but sort of didn’t.

“Chill” shows up in a wheelchair on this season-ending (and series-ending) episode of Traffic Light, and I’m thinking, I know that guy, funny dude… and he sure gets along well in that wheelchair!

Come to find out the actor has actually been wheelchair-bound since 2001 after a biking accident with spinal cord damage. D’oh! But he’s really damned good. His comedic timing is impeccable; sort of the bizarre love-child an impossible union between Bernie Mac (R.I.P.) and Chris Tucker might produce. And dude did a stint on The Cosby Show; you can’t get much better sitcom grooming than that.

Where am I even going with this? Well I think FOX needs to give this dude his own sitcom, or at least feature him as a prominent player in something. Say… in whatever vehicle they give Nelson Franklin (the only real standout on the show), since their rapport was just about perfect. FOX needs a “Chill” injection.

This isn’t to say I despised this finale. Sure, they never killed Callie like I wanted. And yeah, they couldn’t find a laugh for hangdog Ethan (Kris Marshal) if they stuck a laugh track up his backside. But “Help Wanted” was probably Dave Denman’s best episode; seeing him sweat, twitch, and stammer over the “hot” underage babysitter (Carlson Young, who could play Avril Lavigne if they ever decided to make a movie about her) was actually pretty amusing.

(Segue: how the Hell are they finding all these twentysomething actresses who look fifteen? Mila Kunis, Sarah Hyland, Emilia Clarke, Carlson Young… they look like they barely graduated junior high. Or am I just getting old?)

(You don’t have to answer that.)

I won’t lie, I’m not going to miss Traffic Light. But I’m glad it ended better than it began. “Help Wanted” was a C+, so I can say I pretty much saw steady improvement. The overall storytelling (or… what is this… vignettetelling) could really have used some work, but the punch lines were there.

Callie: “He also heard me singing.”

Adam: [even more horrified] “Oh my god.”


Adam: “There aren’t any clothes, Mrs. Ramirez. Can I have my muffin?”

(Okay, I guess you had to be there. But if you’re reading this review, then you probably were. Like who the hell reads reviews of shows they don’t even watch?)

(You freaking weirdo!)

So rather than discuss the show, which is over, done, cancelled, kaput… I want to hear your suggestions for possible shows and/or characters for the departed cast. Like what would you like to see them in?

Personally I’d take Nelson Franklin in any sort of Dilbert-esque work cubicle comedy role. That’s where he shines best.

Or… there you go. Nelson Franklin as Dilbert!

My work here is done.

If you think I’m old, and that my work here is done, follow me on Twitter! That’s @Axechucker, and stay the hell off my lawn!