Reviews: Allen Gregory
Mercy Killed at 7 Episodes.
It's not really clear to me what the intent was with this sitcom. It seems almost like the writers intended it to be a Kafka comedy from the other side; there are two spoiled brats who, episode after episode, get what they want. Rather than watching a sympathetic but ineffective protagonist who we can sort of cheer for struggle and loose, we watch an unsympathetic protagonist succeed against all logic. The Show somehow manages to mix Boring Invincible Hero with Boring Invincible Villain. It's hard to write this review in terms of anything but potential. Likeable characters weren't given a chance to develop and were confused on their own motivation; Jeremy, having escaped an awful relationship he was trapped in, runs right back after a cheap reverse psychology joke. Julie pulls a complete 180, not once but twice, for poorly explained reasons. Even if it is only to watch them get crushed, it would be watchable if they were developed. If Julie were the protagonist trying (and failing) to thwart her awful brother, with Jeremy playing an awkward fatherly role to her this show might have been watchable. Instead, they're hard to really like as they feel like potentially interesting premises left flat. The father and son are only developed in so far as they are spoilt and want things, there isn't any kind of charm in them that even makes them fun to hate. Where Cartman might usually come out on top (or at least break even), its clear he suffers and that lends him a charm. People hate him and he deserves it, but he comes up with new and interesting ways to win that hate. Allen Gregory doesn't have that; there's no attempt at wit, charm or even characterization. He's an unlikeable Anti-Sue who gets his way and the characters simply roll with this. There isn't even a wink and smile at the camera. The rest of the character are one, or two, note jokes. I can see this show having had potential if they'd taken any other route or put any kind of effort into it. Instead we got this; a sociopathic manchild and regular child run amok. It is not remotely as subversive as it wants to be. Thankfully, it died quickly and so we can reclaim some shred of hope in the quality of Television these days. If only because I can't imagine a much worse replacement ever coming on.
It's About as Bad as you can Conceive
The Simpsons was something of a revelation when it first aired, a subversive animated sitcom about a dysfunctional family. It has since been followed by countless imitators jumping on the "edgy animated sitcom" bandwagon, and Allen Gregory is easily one of the worst. In fact, I'm not sure I can think of a cartoon I've watched that is worse. Simply put, the show is both outlandishly meanspirited and, more unforgivably, mindnumbingly unfunny. The premise is paper-thin. A spoiled, pretentious seven-year-old raised by a rich gay couple has to go to elementary school. The eponymous Allen Gregory is obviously molded after Stewie Griffin, except without anything that made Stewie Griffin funny. He's just a brat you want to see punched in the face. Similarly loathsome is Richard, Allen Gregory's father, who's basically just a gay spoiled brat. The problem is I have no idea what the joke with his (or Allen's) character is supposed to be. With Homer Simpson you have an obvious caricature of working class America, and the humor comes from exaggerations of the stereotypes. But with Richard there's no actual joke. Similarly, Stewie Griffin was funny because he was a baby who A. was a sophisticated evil genius, and B. wanted to kill his mother. Babies depend on their mothers, so the image of a baby who hates his mother is ironic. With Richard and Allen, there's no real joke. They have one-note personalities and are utterly vile. There's a problem when the popular bully douchebag is one of your most likable characters. The animation is very bland. Most of the time they use very flat angles with little effort to frame them, and there's little sense of motion. Limited Animation can work if you have good characters and writing (like with Rocky & Bullwinkle), but that isn't the case here. Furthermore, apart from the relentless idiocy of Allen Gregory, Richard, Carl Trent, nobody feels like they're in a cartoon. Most of the other characters are fairly flat straight men except when the plot requires them to be idiots. Every episode ends with the two idiots getting away with everything, and while it attempts to be subversive, it's remarkably predictable because you just know that something's gonna happen so the little waste of space is gonna get what he wants. And then the series ends on a rape joke. And now it's gone. Good riddance.
Stay away from this show, period.
This cartoon has such a ditasteful, horrendous and outright unwatchable set up for so called "jokes" that even it's tasteless nature couldn't entertain me. I do have standards for what I think is funny, I figured through this show. I have no previous experiences with Jonah Hill, all I know is that he's starring in the 2014 film "Wolf of Wall Street", and he didn't even seem funny there. Now, as I haven't actually spent my time watching his previous works I shouldn't be judgemental, but this cartoon makes it very hard not being so. In all honesty, the plot is not the worst of the bunch, but the way the plot was flowing had little logical relevance, Allen Gregory's introduction scene didn't fill his character to an interesting degree, and the way his demeanor is displayed the first minutes you see him makes you instantly dislike him. While he is not the first character with sadistic behaviour as the main trait, other shows have done a better job with this (Even Family Guy, and I don't like that show). Most characters on the side are boring and forgettable, such as Allen Gregory's adopted sister Julie, whose only purpose is to have a female in the protagonist's family, which doesn't really help the show being more interesting. His father Richard is a manipulative, selfish Man Child (you can see where Allen Gregory gets his douchebaggery from) who uses his husband Jeremy for sexual needs, which really rats homosexual people out as if they're only interested in sex. But the absolute most disgusting part about the entire series is Allen Gregory's crush on his 70-year old principal. Actually, this wouldn't be that bad if it wasn't for his very, very sexual view of her which is not funny in the slightest, despite it being Played for Laughs, it's just plain disturbing. Not to mention the jokes, they really irk me and is the piss icing on the turd cake. They're mostly dull, and whenever Allen Gregory is being "funny", you think he's serious or just have a bleak case of being a Cloud Cuckoo Lander. When he isn't being funny he isn't funny either. He's random in the bad way. Don't waste time on this bullshit. Your time is worth more.