Mr. Sunshine: Getting Better

MR. SUNSHINE: 1.07 “Celebrity Tennis”
MR. SUNSHINE: 1.08 “The Assistant”

Could it be that Mr. Sunshine is turning sunny? I have to say, these last two episodes didn’t make me wince, and while they were both a little too deep-seated in the former relationship between Ben and Alice, at least we got to see some new pairings of characters.

Gone are the days when Ben only talks to Crystal and Roman, and Alice only talks to Alonzo. Instead, we have people talking all over the place. Madness!

Sure, the plots were a little standard sitcom cliche: Ben tells Alice’s boyfriend that they used to be together and he gets upset. And Ben gets an email not meant for him, in the updated love letter switch storyline of yore. But beyond that mediocrity, we have a little better writing. I, for one, loved Ben’s quip last week that Alonzo’s angels that wake him in the morning were arguing with the fairies that dressed him. And this week, we had the nice side discussion about Rod’s waterbed on Craigslist, which was overpriced at $350 without delivery. That would have all been fine except for the kicker: that Crystal would have to think about it.

Most of all, we got to see people in different situations. Crystal had her own issues this week, and she really didn’t need Ben’s constant dialog. Alice barely saw Alonzo (in fact, we barely saw Alonzo), and instead, we got to see her interact with Roman. I also loved seeing Roman do something where he didn’t seem like just a loveable goofball. I hope he stays Alice’s assistant for quite a while. Shake it up a bit.

I also enjoyed seeing Richard Kind back on TV, though it’s disappointing that it was in such a short, slapstick capacity. Maybe he’ll be back. After all, the firing didn’t stick. In other news, last week we got a short cameo appearance by Fred Savage during the credits. Oh, how I had wished he could have been the main star throughout the episode instead of the tennis legend I’d never heard of before. Now he would have added a lot to the comedy.

Sure, the show’s not perfect. I wouldn’t have minded seeing Crystal have a heart and not call the deceased a skank after meeting the granddaughter named after her, but she did soften it a bit. The show’s improving but in baby steps, not leaps and bounds. It does make me worry. With only four episodes left an a new show taking its timeslot on the 13th (don’t worry, it’s not permanent; Happy Endings will move to 10:00 from then on. They just wanted back-to-back episodes for the first week), it makes me wonder if this show will grab the audience it needs for renewal.

But do we want renewal? I’m starting to like the characters (even Alice, and you knew how tough I was on her to begin with) and it is growing, but do I get excited about the show yet? Not that much. But comparatively, I do suppose I look forward to this show more than, say, Perfect Couples, so that means something, right?

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