Mad Love – New CBS Sitcom Worthy of Filling the Two and a Half Men Void

When Charlie Sheen was fired by Warner Brothers, the fate of Two and a Half Men was virtually sealed.  Although the show hasn’t officially been cancelled, moving forward without Sheen would be extremely difficult, if not impossible.  Luckily for CBS, they may already have a show ready to step in and fill the void once Two and a Half Men goes off the air.  It’s early in the game, but if the first few episodes are any indication, Mad Love (starring Jason Biggs and Sarah Chalke) looks to have staying power.

It came as somewhat of a surprise to see Jason Biggs on television, given his successful silver screen career.  After watching Mad Love, it’s easy to see why he made the decision to accept the role as Ben Parr, a thirty something lawyer who works with his best friend, Larry Munsch (Tyler Labine).

The two best friends couldn’t be more different…a sort of modern-day “Odd Couple.”

Biggs is perfectly suited to play the straight, hard-working, somewhat anxious lawyer who is determined to build a long-term relationship with Kate Swanson (Sarah Chalke).  Labine, on the other hand, doesn’t look (or act) like a typical lawyer.  He is kind of sloppy, does whatever he can to cut corners to avoid working, and carries himself with a swagger that would seem cocky if he weren’t so likeable.  Of course, his abrasiveness doesn’t appeal to everyone, most notably Connie Grabowski (Judy Greer), who is Kate’s best friend and roommate.

Connie and Larry are always at odds, although there is an underlying sexual tension between the two.  In a recent episode, they realized that they actually hooked up with each other at a costume party several years back.  Both agreed to keep it a secret because neither one wanted to admit what had happened between them to their friends.

Even though Biggs and Chalke are the bigger stars, the biggest laughs on Mad Love are delivered by Labine and Greer. Both have been around for awhile, but neither has become a household name to date.

In recent years, Labine has starred in Reaper and Sons of Tuscon.  He seems to play the same type of character in every show, which makes you wonder if he’s even acting.  Loud and boisterous, funny and likeable, Labine is the type of character that you would like to hang out with in real life.

Greer has made numerous appearances on television and in the movies, but has never been the main attraction.  Her pessimism and acerbic wit are a perfect complement to what the rest of the ensemble cast brings to the table.

Mad Love features a great cast, interesting story lines and plenty of laughs to go around.  If the show is given the chance to shine, Labine and Greer may very well become as famous as their counterparts.

Even if Charlie Sheen didn’t self-destruct, the time was probably drawing near for Two and a Half Men to end its incredible run.  Because the “half” man is now almost out of high school, the show has transitioned away from the original premise into an endless string of sexual innuendos.  It’s still a very funny show, but the premise is nearly identical from week to week.

Networks are usually left scrambling to find a suitable replacement once a hit show goes off the air.  Fortunately for CBS, that show is already on the air, and they would be wise to immediately start promoting Mad Love as the replacement for Two and a Half Men once it is officially cancelled.

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Posted on March 8, 2011, in Sitcoms and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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