TV Review: The Class – Series Premiere on CBS

Show: The Class (CBS)
Episode: Pilot – Series Premiere (Season 1)
Originally Aired: Monday, Sept. 18th 2006
Rating: ½ out of 4 stars

Quick Synopsis: Guy plans a party for his finance and it doesn’t go well.

Long Synopsis: A guy named Ethan played by Jason Ritter (Joan of Arcadia) is planning a party for his fiancé to commemorate the first day they met, which was back in the third grade. They had gone their separate ways and met again later in life after both had become pediatricians. He thought everything was perfect because they also both owned golden retrievers and their birthdays were one day apart. So he sets out to invite as many of their third grade class to this party. A few of them show up and when the fiancé arrives she breaks things off with him because of all things he is to nice, leaving notes and other things that bother her. Old friends and acquaintances reunite at the party and comedy is supposed to ensue.

Review: This first episode was really, really, really bad. It is never a good sign when after watching a show the only thing that really stuck with you about it was how loud the laugh track was. If you can hear the laugh track that means you aren’t laughing and that is never a good thing when watching a comedy. Some things that weren’t funny:

  • Guy about to commit suicide but stops to answer the phone and ends up going to the party.
  • Same guy later backs over possible new girlfriend with his car while talking to her on his cell phone.
  • Another guy who is still living with his mother having an affair with his married former girlfriend played by Andrea Anders (Joey).
  • The interactions of this guy and his mother were not funny either.
  • The character played by Lizzy Caplan (Related).

I don’t remember laughing at all. Can’t even recall cracking a smile at any point. It was an interesting premise on which to build a comedy. Putting together a group of people that looked happy in their third grade class picture and seeing how their lives have turned out. In this case not very well and neither has the show.

Even at the hands of famed comedy director James Burrows and the creators David Crane (Friends) and Jeffrey Klarik (Mad About You) it was a mess. It just shows that just because you struck comedy gold once before that there is no guarantee that you will again. This show is more along the lines of fool’s gold. It looks pretty but isn’t worth much. Maybe the characters will mesh better in future episodes and the writing will get better and these grade school friends will become a group worth watching but given this first episode I wouldn’t hold my breath.

What this episode really did is make me wish even more that Joan of Arcadia and Related were still on the air. Heck, I would rather Joey was still on than something like this make it to the small screen.

What did you think of the series premiere of The Class on CBS? Leave your thoughts in the comments.

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Jason the TVaholic
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