Jim Jefferies is an Australian stand-up comic who has been on the circuit for years and this show has developed from some of his routines, which I was not aware until after I watched the show. Going back to watch his stand-up was odd after seeing some of the stories he tells there I had recently seen acted out.
The simple premise of the show is fairly simple, and standard sitcom fare in that that Jim Jefferies, who plays himself but an exaggerated version of himself of course, decides that he needs to go ‘legit’ and be more of a real man.
In the first episode we are introduced to his best friend is Steve (Dan Bakkedahl – he’s been in loads of things but never as a main guy) and Steve’s brother, Billy (DJ Qualls – Road Trip), is in a care home as he suffers from Muscular Dystrophy so Jim decides to get Billy laid. Obviously Steve is against this but is put-upon and easily persuaded so they take him on a road trip to a brothel, it sounds seedy but is in fact quite sweet and also darkly funny.
From then on the story expands and without spoiling things too much Jim and Steve end up looking after Billy full-time. Jim and Billy are the centre of most of the stories, but Steve gets some focus as does another resident from the care home – Rodney, I loved Rodney but cannot really say why without giving too much away!
It is really well written, it isn’t a family comedy, it covers some edgy topics but in a clever way, Billy and Rodney may be disabled but they are not the butt of the jokes, in fact Billy can be a dick and Jim will call him on it, to the chagrin of onlookers. There’s also a healthy dose of poking fun at liberals and racists. In fact racism seems to pop up a few times but never in a hipster ironic / 1970’s way, it is far too well put together to have to stoop to such levels.
The performances are top notch; alongside the main cast are two sitcom legends as Steve and Billy’s parents – John Ratzenberger (Cheers and many Pixar films) and Rhea Perlman (Cheers and Taxi). Like all good comedy it does drama and pathos brilliantly (for Louie fans think how good the ‘duckling’ episode was) and I will admit that my eyes did start to moisten at one stage when Jim introduced Billy to online dating.
This show will not get massive ratings but should pick up a cult following, and hopefully do well enough to keep it on the air for a few years, it has been picked up for second season and I am looking forward to seeing what weird directions they can take the characters in.