Avenue 5 (2020) by Armando Iannucci

Hugh Laurie is a national treasure, for which country it is hard to say. His American accent and his work in House M. D. makes a strong case for America but then you have ‘Fry and Laurie’ or ‘Avenue 5’ and you gotta admit, he is British.

Avenue 5 in itself is, as a friend put it, a Chuckle Fest. In that it is spattered with jokes and one liners that make you chuckle but is rarely out and out funny. It undoubtedly has a very comic approach to some truly dark subject matter, but this show about five thousand humans stranded on a luxury spaceship thrives on its self-serving, flawed, diverse characters more than it does on its plot.

Which at times does make the show feel a bit stale as it circles the same plot point, never really moving forward but always giving the illusion of change. This is perhaps a common trait in comedy shows where there can’t be a significant shift in the story or the premise crumbles. Examples such as ‘How I met your Mother’ where Ted can never meet the mother till the end, come to mind. But in 2020 where shows like Brooklyn Nine-Nine exist, where Jake and Amy’s relationship is constantly evolving and even the position of the characters in the precinct is up for change, a show that hugs its premise more than it hugs it characters, leaves something to be desired.

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed the characters Avenue 5 had to share but I wish it didn’t feel like the plot was ping-ponging around the same beat. I dare not suggest how they could have done this for as I have recently learned, readers and audiences should be heard when they think something isn’t sitting right. But they have no clue on how to fix it for it is not their story.

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