“It’s just about rich idiots, that’s all it’s about.” -Peter Serafinowicz
Running Wilde is a new half-hour comedy show on FOX. It is the type of show that gives me hope that Americans actually have a sense of humour. It is reminiscent of Arrested Development, everyone’s favourite comedy-show-that-they-started-watching-after-it-was-cancelled. You ABSOLUTELY should tune in before everyone else catches on… or before it gets cancelled as well.
Running Wilde stars Will Arnett (Arrested Development) and Keri Russell (Waitress). Other actors include Peter Serafinowicz (The Peter Serafinowicz Show; a bunch of movies) and David Cross (Arrested Development; a massive stand-up career; dating Amber Tamblyn). The show was co-created by Mitch Hurwitz (Arrested Development. See where I’m going here?).
The premise of Running Wilde goes something like this: Steve Wilde (Arnett) is super rich. He missed out on having the girl of his dreams, Emmy (Russell), when they were younger. Now that they’re grown up, Wilde is a jobless playboy and Emmy is a tree-hugging activist. Emmy and her daughter Puddle (Stefania LaVie Owen) come to live with Wilde, sort of under the pretense that Emmy can change Wilde into a responsible man but more like because it’s awesome living in a mansion. Meanwhile, Emmy is engaged to another tree-hugger, Andy Weeks (Cross), who tries to get Emmy away from Wilde and back living with him (…it’s complicated, as many things are with Cross). Fa’ad (Serafinowicz) is Wilde’s equally rich neighbour, with whom Wilde has a rivalry but who is also Wilde’s best friend. Somewhere in the mix, you get miniature horses, medieval jousting (no Steve, not jesting), and a clever plug for KFC. Arnett also washes a car sexily(ish) at one point.
Needless to say, a description of plot can never do a comedy justice. It’s all about the writing, the acting, the subtleties. Obviously Running Wilde is being compared to Arrested Development because of Hurwitz and Arnett’s involvement in both, and I think this is justifiable. The shows aren’t all that similar, but if you’re a fan of Arrested Development, you’ll definitely like Running Wilde. I think the two shows have a very similar sense of humour.
Running Wilde is really goofy and hilarious. It’s not meant to be shocking, over-the-top, or juvenile, like so much of American comedy. Instead, it’s heavily steeped in the British traditions of ridiculousness, deadpan, and faux-pomp (think ‘Upper Class Twit of the Year’). If you want to pick up a new TV show, or if you’re getting sick of Glee (aren’t we all?), you simply MUST watch Running Wilde!
P.S. Running Wilde is now available on Netflix Canada! Start your free trial now. Or, you know, watch it some other way…
Tacky FOX trailer that doesn’t make the show look as good as it is:
Peter promos an episode: “I don’t usually make myself laugh, but I’m so funny in this episode.”