I missed the entire first season of The Carmichael Show. This was not an accident. The promos made it look kind of stupid and annoying. Especially since they kept showing the part where the mother realizes she’s a bigot by saying the non-Christian kids at schools should have a “separate, but equally nice” place to go when there’s prayer.
But last night, my family wanted to watch Steve Harvey’s Little Big Shots, which is a show about children. At first, I was led to believe it was a show about talented children, but it turns out only some of the children are talented, and the others are famous because they said cute things about doughnuts on Youtube, and the Internet is kind of ridiculous.
This led to a severe bout of inertia, so that when The Carmichael Show came on, I drooled a little and ended up watching the first episode of season two.
The episode opens with Carmichael himself announcing that he is the best boyfriend ever because he’s taking his girlfriend somewhere that is a surprise. After a bit of back and forth, it is revealed that the somewhere that is a surprise is a Bill Cosby performance. Girlfriend is like “Hells, no, guy, what are you thinking?” and then they go to his parents’ house and then the entire episode becomes a lecture on separating art from the artist.
The different characters all had different viewpoints (Carmichael is especially for separating art from the artist; the father is for innocent until proven guilty; the girlfriend is for the 55 VICTIMS OF RAPE; the mother waffles back and forth and finally decides rapists are bad; the brother hates Cosby for being a jerk to young black kids; and the brother’s ex or something didn’t even know about it until she checked out wikipedia), which was nice, but it wasn’t funny. It was like a bunch of standup comedians hanging out and reading from a script. Some excellent points were made, but they were made so unnaturally it was kind of painful to watch.
Later, Carmichael and his dad (the under-utilized David Alan Grier, by the way) decide to go to the Cosby performance, but the dad has a change of heart when he sees parking is $25. He then drops off Carmichael in what leads to the only exchange that made me chuckle.
“You’re leaving me here? This is a bad neighborhood,” says Carmichael.
“There’s no such thing as bad neighborhoods,” says Dad. “Just bad people … who hang out … in neighborhoods like this one.”
There’s some discussion of Michael Jackson (accusations of pedophilia), Woody Allen (grossly married his stepdaughter) and Marky Mark (beat up an Asian man while shouting out racial slurs), which is, again, all very interesting (except in the case of Marky Mark, because why bother separating the art from the artist when they both suck?), but not funny. It seriously felt like somebody sitting me down and telling me what I should be thinking, and it wasn’t funny.