The new Fox animated show Bob’s Burgers premiered in the time slot just in front of Family Guy, which has traditionally been occupied by The Cleveland Show in recent months.
Bob’s Burgers is created by Loren Bouchard of Home Movies and Dr. Katz fame, two shows that rely mostly on dry humor to get the job done.
In the case of Dr. Katz, the humor was served up ultra-dry. Home Movies was almost as dry as Dr. Katz, its predecessor from Bouchard and a show that relied on some of the same cast members, but sprinkled in a little more Simpsons/Family Guy-style outlandish humor at times as well.
Bob’s Burgers, which has received mixed reviews from many critics, readers, and yes, Tweeters alike, is the next step on that ladder.
The show tries hard to be more over-the-top and faster-paced than Bouchard’s two cult classic adult-style cartoons, and the result is an interesting hybrid of a show that seems to have a little bit of an identity crisis.
Despite that, pilots are never easy, especially with so much hype surrounding Bob’s Burgers, and the premiere still featured plenty of laughs. With H. Jon Benjamin (Coach McGuirk on Home Movies and lead voice in FX’s Archer as well) around, gut-busting laughs are never far away as the pilot proved.
The supporting voice actors are solid as well and Bob’s family son Eugene and daughter Louise have a lot of potential, as do the other supporting characters, although wife Linda and daughter Tina need some work to avoid detracting from the show too much.
The early reviews of Bob’s Burgers from most fans and critics tend to be all over the place in large part because it seems out-of-place in Fox’s lineup with the schizophrenic Family Guy and The Cleveland Show, and also comes right after The Simpsons, another faster-paced show with characters that are as well known to many as their own family members.
Bob’s Burgers can find its niche in its current time slot if it can continue to mix the dry humor with the more over-the-top stuff, but it’s going to be hard to please everyone.
The best case scenario is that people warm up to both styles of humor and find it an attractive alternative to its more manic counterparts on Fox.
But the likely scenario is that it ends up eventually wearing out its welcome and instead moves to Adult Swim on The Cartoon Network to precede to re-runs of Home Movies and other similar shows.
In the end, such a scenario might be the best for all parties as it will allow the show’s creators to get back to their roots as comedic writers while the Fox Sunday TV viewers can go back to their own comfort zones.
At any rate, for the purposes of this Bob’s Burgers review, the verdict here is that the show is well worth checking out to see how it evolves over the next few weeks, especially for fans of Bouchard’s earlier works.