The Bill Engvall Show
family sit-com: husband, wife, two teens, one smaller kid
Type of Pilot: sit-com
Similar Shows: Family Ties, The Cosby Show, Home Improvement, etc. etc. (any other generic sit-com where you had a mom and dad with three kids)
Strengths: It raises a few smiles, and it is well cast.
Weaknesses: We've seen this exact sit-com a million times before.
Impressive Characters: None. These people are character-types, not characters.
Impressive Actors: It's a strong cast, with good comic timing and an easy, believable chemistry.
Less-Than-Impressive Characters: None.
Less-Than-Impressive Actors: None.
Other Info: Airs Tuesdays at 9.
Three Things I Really Like About This Pilot:
Bill is a likable leading man, he's a good dad type, and his antics do raise a smile or two from time to time. He behaves like a TV Dad, of the type typical of these shows. He loves his wife and family, he is demonstative towards his wife, a little bit confused about his kids, a little bit confused by the world at large, and he's prone to go to extremes when he wants something.
Nancy Travis is one of my favourite performers. I first became a fan when she had a series called Almost Perfect. It's a tad disappointing to see her playing "the wife" in a generic sit-com, but - having said that - I must admit she brings a lot to the role. she's charming and sweet and her chemistry with Engvall is natural and easy.
It wasn't awful, and I could even watch a second episode. If I had to.
Three Things I Really Don't Like About This Pilot:
We've seen it before.
It's a bit bland.
It's a bit predictable.
I put off watching this for weeks and weeks. I usually hate this type of show, especially if it is badly done. So, it was a pleasant relief to find that it's actually well done and likeable. It's still not exactly my cup of tea, but it is is harmless fun, I suppose.