The Middle (2009-Present)

The Middle

(TV-PG)

Plot Summary: The daily mishaps of a married woman and her semi-dysfunctional family and their attempts to survive life in general in the city of Orson, Indiana.

Creators: Eileen Heisler, DeAnn Heline

Stars: Patricia Heaton, Neil Flynn, Charlie McDermott

Serious Jest: animated beer mug 25% (transparent bkgrd)animated beer mug 25% (transparent bkgrd) (White Noise) Every once in a while, you’ll get a chuckle out of this show, and there are some insightful commentaries about life in general. However, watching Frankie & Mike Heck schlep through life in their crappy jobs, in their crappy house, and with their ungrateful kids is way too often depressing. After Season 1, I will only be watching further episodes of this show if it happens to come on TV while I’m doing something else. That being said, Heaton and Flynn are charismatic in their roles; Frankie is a much better character than Debra Barone. Also, Atticus Shaffer is an excellent little weirdo.

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Bob’s Burgers (2011-Present)

(TV-PG)

Plot Summary: Bob’s Burgers centers on the Belcher family (consists of Bob, Linda, Tina, Gene and Louise) who own a hamburger restaurant. Bob’s burgers are really delicious and appear to be better than his rivals’ but when it comes to selling burgers, his kids aren’t really helpful, as more customers head over to Jimmy Pesto’s restaurant. Written by Campbell Talaepa

Creator: Loren Bouchard

Stars: H. Jon Benjamin, Dan Mintz and Eugene Mirman

Serious Jest: (Casual Watch)  This animated comedy is witty, and it will leave you with a silly grin on your face, although the ROTFLYAOs are fewer and farther between.  Benjamin is definitely one of my favorite voice actors on TV today, and I’ve liked Kristen Schaal ever since The Flight of the Conchords.  I’m impressed by the writers’ ability to keep thinking of creative names for specialty burgers; the board even changes multiple times every episode!  It’s also interesting to see what establishment goes out of business next door during the opening credits every episode, kind of like the ever-changing couch sequence in The Simpsons‘ opening credits.  Additionally, it’s kind of funny that most of the female parts are played by men.  So far my favorite episode is Burger Boss (Season 2, Ep 4), featuring Aziz Ansari.  Catch this show when it’s on, and you’ll get some laughs out of it.