The Kominsky Method (Chuck Lorre, 2018): USA

Reviewed by Jackson Davis. Viewed at AFI Fest 2018.

Netflix’s newest original show: The Kominsky Method, by Chuck Lorre is a dark and somewhat depressing comedy in which Sandy Kominsky (Michael Douglas) and his friend Norman Newlander (Alan Arkin) work to get through the difficulties that arise with growing old.

The story itself is simple enough to follow, but remains engaging and enjoyable to follow. Sandy, a famous acting coach, whose personal goal of becoming an actor himself never led to much, runs his own acting school. Alan is Sandy’s longtime friend and agent, who feels disconnected from others as he grapples with the death of his wife. Each episode connects to the running theme of aging, whether it’s dealing with teenagers, or the increasing number of failing bodily functions, the show will use it to tell a quip or two that hits much harder, largely due to the weight of the theme itself.

Unlike many other comedy shows, jokes rarely overstay their welcome. Instead they are used to provide more depth to a character or to keep the scenes progressing at a steady pace. Its brand of humor is incredibly broad, likely as a result of its potentially huge audience, and to the average viewer, a few jokes will fall flat or invoke an eye-roll (usually those about certain bodily functions and fluids) but scenes are well written enough that you will be enjoying yourself during each of its 30-min episodes.

It also helps that the show is spearheaded by Chuck Lorre, whose most notable works include Two and a Half Men, Big Bang Theory, and Young Sheldon, among many other things. Although the Kominsky Method is much darker than Lorre’s other productions, it’s much more exciting, incredibly funny.

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