The Other Two premieres January 24th on Comedy Central.
[Ed. Note: Being that TV and City is on a bit of a hiatus, this article has not been edited.]
By Jen S.
Comedy Central scores a big win with the new show “The Other Two”, created by Sarah Schneider and Chris Kelly, former co-head writers of NBC’s beloved sketch show, “Saturday Night Live”.
The story follows the rise of overnight singing sensation, “ChaseDreams”, a thirteen-year-old who stumbled into viral status after posting a video of a (terrible) song he wrote. A true case of art mirroring life, as the young actor in the role is Case Walker, of internet fame.
But the show isn’t really about him at all (and thank god, or I would have dropped it). Instead, as the title suggests, the focus is on “the other two”. As in, Chase’s adult siblings, Brooke and Carey. Played by Heléne Yorke (High Maintenance, Masters of Sex) and Drew Tarver (Bajillion Dollar Properties) respectively, these are the siblings that really sealed the deal for me.
Each a hot mess in their own way, they are struggling to find their place in the world and navigating everything from identity crises, poor romantic choices, pride, shame, envy, insecurity and so much more. All while managing to make me laugh out loud in each and every episode.
SNL alum and award-winning actress, Molly Shannon, stars as the mother, bitten by the fame bug and all too willing to ride Chase’s coattails. Carey and Brooke even fall into this temptation up to a point, Carey in particular becoming hopeful that his fame by association might be able to boost his struggling acting career. All of the adults around Chase take advantage of him, in fact. Some more than others. His manager, played by Ken Marino (Fresh Off The Boat, Drunk History) is particularly slimy, subjecting Chase to increasingly bizarre and alarming “improvements” and highly objectionable career choices. The fact that everything depicted actually feels like something that could very much happen in the industry is frightening, and that’s exactly what the show is aiming for.
The whole thing is a very tongue-in-cheek commentary on many issues, in fact. The absurdity surrounding fame, and child fame in particular. The (not so) hidden prejudices in the casting process for actors. Wrestling with one’s sexuality and the acceptance thereof. The idea that there is a certain age by which we are supposed to have it all together.
Overall, it was a very enjoyable watch. Each episode is only 20 minutes long, but they feel much longer, and I mean that as a compliment. They manage to pack a lot into each episode without making it feel crowded, which is truly a feat. I felt bad for Chase, who was an unremarkable kid thrust into a world of insanity. I was invested in Carey and Brooke and really rooted for them to find themselves and their own version of happiness. Even some of the side characters provoked strong emotions, another testament to great writing. The pacing is tight, the direction is solid, and I can’t say enough about how much I laughed.
I give The Other Two a B+.