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Whitney - Episode 1.02 - First Date - Review

"And then I murdered them and had sex with their dead bodies." —Whitney

Last week, I was shocked at how bad the reviews were for Whitney. This week, I'm still a bit surprised, but can understand if the audience was even less inclined to laugh this time around. However, I still don't entirely understand the backlash.

There seems to be this huge shift with the idea of sitcoms in latter years that has gone from just slapstick half hour fillers to actual stories comparable to respectable television dramas. There's a part of me — a grandiose, extreme part of me — that absolutely adores that idea, because comedy is such an underrated art it's almost aggravating. I appreciate comedy more than any drama any day of the week, and there are some really good shows that push story forward while being true comedies.

Parks and Recreation is brewing on a romance with as much chemistry as an hourlong drama. 30 Rock has always worked on the struggle between being single and the ticking of a woman's biological clock, even in its whacked out way. How I Met Your Mother, a show which uses a multi-camera format, just aired an episode this past Monday that gave me goosebumps.

And when Whitney is put side-by-side, or screen-by-screen, with these compelling comedies, it's no contest which shows are of higher caliber.

But there's another part of me that just wants to laugh as much as I possibly can in those 22 minutes. Sometimes, I want to watch a show uninhibited by the storylines and the season-long arcs and conflicts — I just want to watch people say funny and relatable things. And in that case, Whitney fits the the bill.

I can't relate to longing stares at a co-worker in my government job. I can't relate to being the head writer of a terrible comedy show while seeking to adopt. I can't relate to seeing my ex after six years to find out she's getting married soon.

I can relate to talking to someone while they're on the phone to which I say outlandish things to get their attention because I do that practically every, single day. And even then the problem isn't relatedness because this week's plot for Whitney was so stupid it might hurt to actually write it out. And that was probably a detriment because I noticed my laughs dwindled after "I can see your phone, you're playing Angry Birds." (That whole scene definitely made me laugh aloud, however.)

And while I may have stopped laughing and only smiled or chuckled the rest of the episode (which was a long time, as if you watched, you know the Angry Birds scene was the second one), I'll be back next Thursday (well, Friday On Demand). I'll sit down, I'll forget about smart storytelling, and I'll let these people say jokes and do everything but crawl out their TVs to make me laugh.

More of my reviews: NoWhiteNoise.com | @MichaelCollado