In its Series Debut, ‘Man Seeking Woman’ Establishes its Strange Comic Vision

GameStop, Inc.

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Over the years there have been numerous comedic takes on people trying to wade through the rough waters of the dating scene. While Man Seeking Woman may not be groundbreaking in the subject it tackles, I’ve still never seen anything quite like this new series. Created by Simon Rich, executive produced by Lorne Michaels, and starring Jay Baruchel, Man Seeking Woman has an impressive crew both in front and behind the camera. What they’ve created is one of the strangest comedies that has ever hit television screens.

In the first episode, entitled Lizard, Josh Greenberg (Baruchel) is dealing with the repercussions of the disintegration of his relationship with Maggie (Maya Erskine). Tired of watching his friend linger in an apathetic state, Mike (Eric Andre), Josh’s Tinder obsessed friend, encourages Josh to hit the town. Only Josh has plans already. His sister Liz (Britt Lower) has already set him up on a blind date. The date, however, is with a Scandinavian troll named Gorbachenka (Raeanna Guitard). Unsurprisingly, the date doesn’t go well. After a failed attempt to get into a nightclub Josh goes home defeated. In a moment of weakness Josh decides to call Maggie. She happily answers and invites him over to a party she’s hosting. En route to her place Josh runs into Mike and his latest Tinder date Aja (Masa Lizdek). Just before entering her apartment, Mike informs Josh that Maggie has a new boyfriend. The new boyfriend is older and rather infamous, which makes for a rather awkward situation.

Based on the first episode, I haven’t exactly fallen in love with this show, but its definitely earned my respect. It’s especially self-assured in its absurd and strange humor that it expects audiences to meet the show on its own terms. There’s no attempt or need to explain the strange happenings of this world, and that’s a creative decision I really respect. I certainly hope that over the coming weeks that the show is able to gain its legs and build on this very promising debut. Jay Baruchel does a great job subtly accepting the absurdity of this world as just another everyday occurrence. Among one of the show’s strengths is the way that its actors play it straight. If there’s any reason to keep an eye out for Man Seeking Woman, it’s because it has established in its first episode that anything can happen. That’s exciting.

Man Seeking Woman premieres on FXX on Wednesday January 14th at 10:30pm and will be available through the FX Now app.

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