Airdate: 1994 (ABC), 1995 (Fox)
Featuring the voices of Jon Lovitz, Maurice LaMarche
The Critic is one of the funniest, if not the funniest, show of all-time. Although it was only on the air for two seasons, it featured great and smart writing, a wonderful crop of voice actors, and some of the most memorable characters in TV history. While many people can talk about how Arrested Development was unfairly canceled, that show does not even touch the genius that The Critic was.

The Critic starred the voice of Jon Lovitz (criminally underused in Hollywood) as Jay Sherman, a low level film critic living in New York City, who hosts the show "Coming Attractions" on a station owned by the Ted Turner-like super billionaire Duke Philips. The show essentially works like this: we follow Jay's day to day life, dealing with his eccentric adopted parents, chain smoking old makeup lady, his little son from a failed marriage, and other such characters. In between this, as it is a show about film, we get fake trailers for movies that do not exist as well as movie references and jokes galore. If you are a film nerd, this is your show simply put.

The characters on this show were just phenomenal. Lovitz shines as Jay Sherman, who is a yutz and a general crab, but you can't help but laugh at and even at some points root for. Duke Philips, voiced by Charles Napier, is one of the greatest bosses ever on television. Philips, while rich, also retains his Southern roots, and at one moment he's stern and the next he is enjoying his personal collection of singing animatronic country bears in his office. Duke is a boss, but he's a boss with a screw loose.

The greatest character on the show is Jay's dad Franklin Sherman, voiced by Gerrit Graham. Franklin is a former NYC mayor whose years of drinking and old age have turned him into a completely senile and crazy character. All of the best gags, from the fishmobabywhirlamagig to El Kabong belong to him. Usually, fathers on an animated show (or even a live action sitcom) are fat lovable oafs. Franklin breaks that rend. He isn't an oaf; he's just insane.

There is a catch to the show however: due to the years produced, some of the New York jokes and political humor are outdated (many references to Michael Dukakis, who I don't even remember growing up), but the way they deliver them is so funny that you can't help but laugh even if you are in the dark.

Doing this show justice on here would take paragraphs upon paragraphs of explanation and frankly, it needs to be seen rather than heard. Check out the two youtube clips I'm putting at the end of the article and soak in the awesome that was The Critic.

Thankfully, the series is available in its entirety at stores nationwide as well as the old reliable Amazon.com. Also included are the 7 or so internet episodes produced around 2000 which don't feature a lot of the cast and aren't as good, but still have its merit.

Do yourself a favor and buy this series. It does not stink.


10/29/2010 06:10

There is no extended a lost, A companion will no for a longer period single, About to possess a everlasting chilly warm, Let's have a very sort of love I met you in space.

11/05/2010 19:43

Do you mean this is the job of the critic? It is the artist, not the critic, who gives society something of lasting value. A critic might here perhaps return upon me with my own expressions.


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