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Primetime Picks… 12/4/19

Dec 04 Posted by in Features | Comments

Tonight FOX kicks off the fun but also heartwarming limited holiday series, The Moodys. Dan Moody (François Arnaud, Midnight, Texas) is the youngest of the three Moody children. He moved to New York City to become a photographer, but is returning home to Chicago for the holidays to spend a week with his dysfunctional family. His parents, Sean (Denis Leary, Rescue Me) and Ann (Elizabeth Perkins, Sharp Objects), were expecting to finally meet Dan’s girlfriend. However, the couple broke up just before the trip, due to Dan’s inability to commit to moving in together. Dan’s oldest sibling, Sean Jr. (Jay Baruchel, Man Seeking Woman) still lives at home with his parents. He’s a maintenance man at the local ice rink, but he has a grudge with his boss. His parents are eager for Sean to find a real job and get out of the house. Sean Sr. thought that one day his son might join him in the family heating and air conditioning business. Middle sister/lawyer Bridget (Chelsea Frei, Sideswiped), on the other hand, appears to have it all together—but there’s a secret she’s been keeping from her husband that is about to throw her world into chaos. Speaking of chaos, Ann Moody just wants to be able to relax, but Sean has hired some under-qualified guys from his AA group to renovate the master bathroom—a project that has no end in sight. With the holiday quickly approaching, Ann is eager to get their house back in order. Meanwhile Sean has a major secret that he’s been keeping from his children, which could put a major damper on the holiday celebration.

The Moody have a list of traditional activities planned for the week leading up to Christmas, many of which involve the oddball extended family. The first event is a welcome home party for Dan, where the guest of honor has a meet-cute with Cora (María Gabriela de Faría, Deadly Class). There is instant chemistry between the two, but the only problem is that Cora is dating Dan’s cousin Marcos (Josh Segarra, Orange Is the New Black, Arrow). Marcos can be an obnoxious Bro at times, but he’s still Dan’s best friend, and Dan couldn’t do that to his best friend…or could he? And this is just the start of what is going to be quite the crazy week for the Moodys.

The Moodys is based on an Australian series. In that show, each episode followed a consecutive family holiday get-together. However, in the US version, the events take place over just one week, with each episode covering one day of the holiday adventures of the Moody family. As the family members try to partake in their various holiday traditions, things go comedically and disastrously wrong. However, no matter what the holidays throw at them, the Moodys always manage to stick together. I was expecting more of a wild, irreverent comedy, but the series has a surprising amount of heart. The six-episode series will air across three nights, with two back-to-back 30-minute episodes each night. The story plays out like one long movie, though there is usually some event with family or friends that is the focus of each episode. The cast is amazing—they feel like they could actually be a family—and they are joined by some fun side characters such as the talkative uncle, the bumbling under-qualified contractors, Sean’s rival AC installers, and Bridgitte’s old high school friend/high school wrestling coach Monty (Kevin Bigley, Sirens), who still pines over her a decade later.

In tonight’s premiere, “Pilot; Episode 2”, freshly single, Dan returns to his childhood home for Christmas to find it’s in various stages of disarray; Dan meets and instantly clicks with Cora, but she’s dating his cousin; Bridget returns to her childhood home after a fight with her husband.

Tonight, I’ll also be watching/recording The Goldbergs, Schooled, Modern Family, Single Parents, Stumptown, Survivor, Making It, The Masked Singer, Ghosting: The Spirit of Christmas.

For additional suggestions on what to check out tonight, including a new episode of Nancy Drew, check out the If We Controlled Your Remote… 12/4/19 post at TVisMyPacifier.com.