Tonight, CBS unveils Mom, the latest series that Chuck Lorre has co-created for the network. Will it be as successful as some of the others? Is it worth watching?
On Mom, Christy (Anna Faris) is a single mother, waitress, and recovering alcoholic. She and her children return home to live with Christy’s mother (Allison Janney), a recovering addict herself who’s all too willing to help her daughter see her flaws. Others in the cast are Sadie Calvano, Blake Garrett Rosenthal, Spencer Daniels, Matt Jones, Nick Corddry, and French Stewart.
Does the show sound like a winner? Here’s what some critics have to say:
LA Times: “I would think Mom has little chance of becoming as popular as [Two and a Half ] Men, though for reasons that are mostly to its credit. It’s the less obvious, more serious show — within the strictures, that is, of a form in which an audible laugh (laid in if necessary) is demanded every few lines. (The oddest are those that follow the positive-thinking affirmations Christy repeats in her car: ‘The more grateful I am, the more reasons I find to be grateful’ — I am still looking for the gag there.)”
Salt Lake Tribune: “I like it. A lot. Because I laughed. A lot. And because I really like Anna Faris and Allison Janney… With Faris and Janney on board, Mom could be the next big comedy hit in Lorre’s incredible run of success.”
NY Daily News: “Too much awkward, not enough funny. Janney isn’t to blame here, because she has fine comic timing and delivery. But now that she’s done a couple of comic roles, it’s possible she’s even better in a serious part with dry, droll comedy sprinkled around as a seasoning. Just a thought. Faris does her best with a role that still feels unfinished, and too much of the rest of the cast consists of caricatures. Impatient teenage daughter, anyone? Mom delivers some laughs. It still needs to get organized.
Daily Herald: “‘Get over yourself, Rudy,’ Christy tells him. ‘I saw you at McDonald’s going down on a Big Mac.’ That was one line that lived up to the overactive laugh track in the pilot, which spit out guffaws at the mere sight of a window opening. Mom will get sampling due to its plum slot on the most popular network’s schedule; it needs more genuine laughs to be called a keeper.”
SF Gate: “Faris is terrific, and so is Janney. Janney wasn’t terrific when she was ‘zany Janney’ in ABC’s miserable Mister Sunshine, but she’s slightly more grounded as Mom’s mom, who seems to have no filter between her brain and her mouth.”
USA Today: “Still, at its core, Mom has a solid group of characters and a very strong cast (including French Stewart as the restaurant’s dictatorial chef) who, by the end of the episode, display the kind of chemistry sitcoms need. And, of course, there’s [Chuck] Lorre, who has an almost unmatched ability to fix his shows as they go along, tweaking what works and dumping what doesn’t. As witness the transformation of Big Bang from good pilot to great series. If he can do the same for Mom, the wait will be worth it.”
Boston Globe: “Family dysfunction with a side of substance abuse is a tricky line for a sitcom to walk. While the pilot isn’t exactly uproarious, along with a gifted supporting cast, Faris and Janney pull several solid laughs out of the wreckage of their relationship, giving Mom potential.”
What do you think? Do you think Mom is worth watching? If you’ve seen it, will you watch again?