“Pilot” – Detroiters Review

Chad White

Season 1, Episode 1

You guys are the ad kings of Detroit!

With the tired Workaholics on its way out and their other shows on hiatus, Comedy Central is in desperate need of new blood. Sam Richardson and Tim Robinson’s Detroiters is that something new that the network has been needing. While it’s true that the show does in fact carry the same tropish natures of the channel’s current catalogue – two best friends are on a mission to make life more simple as they partake in fun experiences along the way – this show allows for more sentiment to seep through the comedy.

Robinson stars as Tim Cramblin, a man child looking to run his father’s marketing company the way he did. Along for the ride is Richardson’s Sam Duvet. The two have only been able to land local businesses after their entire workforce deserted them (save for their decrepit receptionist who is willing to do ANYTHING to please her boss who she believes to be the elder Cramblin). After getting news that a big client, Carter Grant (executive producer Jason Sudekis), is looking for a marketing firm, the two men put all of their energy into the pitch. They’re earnest, too, as they work all night only to get sidetracked by a game of office basketball and wanting to see if a glass pane is capable of breaking.

With all the inconveniences these two afford themselves, Tim and Sam are ultimately sweet in their want to be successful. There’s no real spite or angry drive thus far. Even the final moments of the show manage to continue the graceful demeanor of the show. The revelation that the two live next door to each other is only compounded by Sam’s want of fixing up the house he’s trying to flip (he got a great deal on it for $20,000) and Tim’s want to do right by his loving wife (Sam’s sister) whose day he genuinely likes to hear about. On an identical plane is the lead character’s shared interest in making Detroit look good. A scene with the two men worrying about their pitch meeting with Grant is encased in the setting that is the city dump as they greet returning disposal workers who return their appreciation.

But these guys are pretty inept when it comes to their unfocused endeavors. When they get word that Grant is at a local steakhouse, they drop their current work opportunity with the Hot Tub King of Detroit (Steve Higgins). They leave the editing portion of the commercial to their film student intern who turns it into an art piece. It plays and looks as smug as the last sentence made it. But, in true sitcom fashion, Tim and Sam luck out as the commercial seems to have helped the King’s sex life with his wife. On the opposite side of the spectrum, there are truly ingenious bits of planning as the guys dab steak sauce and steal a receipt from a table as they approach Grant’s table. It’s a sign of great writing when the main characters can come off as equal idiots and brilliant.

Should you watch the Detroiters pilot?

Comedy Central was missing a comedy that doesn’t entirely crap on its stars. The appeal of Detroiters is that it can play on multiple levels. It’s as wacky as late Broad City but as confident as Workaholics. Start watching now to see two comedians make Detroit an appealing city.