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'Better Off Ted': Why aren't more of you watching?


I'm starting to worry my liking of any new show is automatically its kiss of death (look no further than Kings and Pushing Daisies). The most recent example? Better Off Ted. Even though last night's new episode increased its total viewership from last week, I'm not sure if its 4.7 million viewers (and counting!) are enough to save it from the graveyard. It's such a shame, too, since the workplace-set comedy is the most promising new sitcom I've seen in ages. (Luckily, I'm not alone -- Ken Tucker agrees with me, too.)


There's plenty to like about Better Off Ted, and I can assure you it is much, much better than its eye-rolling title. For one thing, the (small) cast is uniformly strong. Jay Harrington, who you may recall from Desperate Housewives and Private Practice, exudes a cool, easy charm that brings to mind both Jon Hamm and George Clooney. Portia de Rossi is deliciously droll as Ted's self-absorbed, no-nonsense boss. Admittedly, she's doing a more socially awkward variation of her character on Arrested Development, but you won't catch me complaining. She's fantastic. And the supporting cast -- Andrea Anders (Linda), Malcolm Barrett (Lem) and Jonathan Slavin (Phil) -- completely sell the increasingly ludicrous story lines, like last night's episode when Lem and Phil accidentally drugged Linda with an energy-enhancing band-aid. (Pictured: said drugging takes effect!) Stuff like that happens all the time at Veridion Dynamics, the multi-million dollar corporation they all work for. Already we've seen someone get frozen (poor Lem!), pumpkins developed as weapons, and beef made out of thin air. The best part? Each episode contains a faux-advertisment for Veridion Dynamics. They're consistently hilarious.


I like Better Off Ted and it's cutesy reality-meets-fantasy tone. I just hope it's around long enough to develop an audience, which might not be in the cards since ABC has been a little cancel-happy these days. (Need I mention Pushing Daisies again?) Have you been tuning in, PopWatchers? If not, how come? Too many other shows flooding your DVR's?


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Comments

| Jun 13, 2009 6:20PM EDT
I appreciate the satire and everything and I do overall like the show but its not really laugh out loud funny like most other comedies. To me its a toned down Weeds sort of show. Less funny, satire is just as good, and less drama. Decent but not good enough that I'd care if it was canceled.
| May 20, 2009 9:47AM EDT
Life. Better. :))
| May 9, 2009 12:14AM EDT
The reason I only just started watching it was because I had only ever seen one preview/advertisement and it was WAAAAY long ago. I would definitely have kept up on it if I had seen more advertising for it. I'm hoping it gets renewed for another season!
| May 8, 2009 4:18PM EDT
I thought the show was going to be terrible, based on the title and the early promotions. Was surprised by the kind of Dilbert/Corbert/Onion-like take on corporate life -- satirical, yet spot-on. I think it's very relatable and has the potential for a much bigger audience. It isn't for everyone, but I think a lot of people would like it if they tried it. It needs proper promotion, good word of mouth, and more time. Still hate the title. :) (At first I thought "cool!" that its humor translates overseas but on second thought, "Oh no! Does that mean big companies are kind of awful everywhere?!" ;) And yet, I still think it's cool...)
| May 5, 2009 7:01PM EDT
It's my favorite of the new shows in 2009. I watch every episode more than once (thanks to the dvr).
| Apr 29, 2009 11:54PM EDT
i watch my shows online, but for Better Off Ted ive made an effort to try to watch it on the television. Its a good show and i want it to make it dammit!
| Apr 29, 2009 10:29PM EDT
i agree. i hope it gets another season or two.
| Apr 18, 2009 12:53PM EDT
I watch it online too - from France... One of the best new shows, I'd like it to stay at least one season
| Apr 17, 2009 10:29PM EDT
I watch it online only.

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