After watching the first episode of The Good Guys my thumb nail opinion is that it was pretty fucking hilarious. My thumbnail criticism is that while the central conceit was funny on so many levels I don’t know if it is enough to sustain for a whole season.
The central conceit is that Bradley Whitford’s character is like he is straight out of a 70’s tv show or movie. From the dress to his mustache he’s got the look down. Like its not even a look but is just who he is. So many of Whitford’s roles from Revenge of the Nerds II through Josh Lymon on The West Wing are these straight laced preppy guys that this role was in some ways a revelation allowing him to scuzz it up to great effect. His character is still living off of his reputation from a heroic act 25 years ago. He’s a drunk, the idea of a “career” is a foreign concept and no matter what you back your partner.
As is to be expected with this kind of story though he’s got a few tricks up his sleeve that the new school of cops could learn from.
“What, you never heard of good cop sick cop”
Colin Hanks character is the Felix Ungar in this partnership. He’s wants to advance his career; resents his new babysitting duty and is sure he’s got nothing to learn from this over the hill dirt bag…yet does. His righteousness and fastidiousness though don’t define him. Neither of the characters traits really define them and they manage to grow and change over the course of the hour and start to feel more full then the funny that they bring.
This is a classic old school vs new school set up that satirizes most if not all cop show cliches. From the look, to the classic muscle car, to Whitford’s character saying that he doesn’t believe in blood work to the background music that played when he was kicked off the case. Even one of the final pieces of dialog is a subtle joke. Whitfords character saying that they need to track down Julius (whom he believes is now his snitch) and see what happening on the streets. In other words its a Huggy Bear moment.
The episode has brilliant plotting, throwing out multiple and disparate characters and story threads then somehow pulling them all together and putting them into play.
The Good Guys was the most fun I’ve had watching a TV show in a long while — hopefully the party can continue.