Man Seeking Woman is the kind of sketch television you’d watch again and again. The lead star Jay Baruchel, whom you may know from previous films such as This is the End and She’s Out of My League, has showcased his awkward boyishness, sheer coyness, and range of comedic tenor in the appropriately titled pilot “Lizard.” Creator and writer Simon Rich (son of Frank, ex-NYT columnist current New York writer) has managed a collectively curated series based upon short stories based upon.
As we open with the inevitable breakup, our leading character Josh Greenberg (Baruchel) stands outside his girlfriend’s apartment, well, actually now ex-girlfriend. She hands over all his old belongings, including Isaac Newton, his adored lizard. It’s that moment. Door slam! I guess Maggie wasn’t into lizards? What’s her deal? As if the quest for something sincerely redemptive and possibly life-changing wasn’t fathomable, Josh has to deal with his sister Liz (Britt Lower) setting him up with what’s yet to become a troll, literally, crawling out of a dumpster. Liz doesn’t get what’s going on with her brother and she deeply, deeply cares. She just wants him to be happy.
The date goes on for about five seconds. I mean, this is a troll… A troll with lipstick! It’s funny actually because the troll reminded me of all the crazed monsters in Ernest Scared Stupid, which I’m afraid to admit I have seen. He does run off scared stupid. Such analogous humor and striking imagery that makes you almost think you’re watching a snippet of Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas makes this show a riotous, abstract new rom-com. It’s particularly male driven, yes, but that doesn’t necessarily mean female viewers won’t indulge in a weekly checkup of Man Seeking Woman. It’s absolutely original, engaging, and a new breed of the rom-com. It strikes a chord as well with the generational usage of social media as a means of finding “true love”. If you ask me, I’d say it’s pretty timely.
The fantasy aspect of the show continues to be pushed even further. Josh’s view of the world has basically turned upside down and things don’t look pretty, especially when the discovery that Adolf Hitler is dating his ex just so happens. Oh, you know….Just casual times at the loft with Adolf. Maggie totes rebounded with Adolf Hitler. Ewwww….. That’s not even a rebound. What is that? Like…clogged garbage disposal sweepstakes? His Tinder-addicted roommate, Mike (Eric André), suggested the party after all. It doesn’t go down so well. It’s like, “What the hell? People are laughing at Adolf’s jokes?” Not in my house! Josh leaves that dumb party and heads over to ride back home after consecutives FMLs. This is a fine moment because SNL’s Vanessa Bayer shows up. New girl. New number. Suddenly, Josh has a private driver, his photo is being taken, and everyone is cheering for Josh Greenberg! YAY! He got a number for “new girl.” But, really how broken is he? We really don’t know as audiences what these two shared. Guess we’ll have to find out next week.