How many times have I averred on my own blog that the Internet is the TV of the future? Our Nerd Lord and Master Chris Hardwick has given similar advice to young folks on the Nerdist podcast: just do it. Nike knows what they’re doing with their slogan. Well my friends, the future is here, now.
Checked Out is a new webseries that is some of the best TV I have ever seen. It centers around a couple of slackers (and some of their co-workers) as they interact in the dingy-looking break room of a grocery store. Our main character actually looks as though he never leaves the break room (and probably doesn’t, judging from dialogue in later episodes). It’s stellar sketch comedy, in that it takes place in just that one little room, and all the hilarity and tension is all about the characters. We are introduced to the characters in Episode 1, and it only gets weirder and funnier as the episodes progress. Who knew customer service was so soul-sucking and weird? Actually *all* of us who have ever worked in customer service know…
1) It’s hilarious.
2) It is extremely well acted. By this I mean: the actors are all playing objectives, strongly, with no vestige of ironic postmodern winking at the audience. Every performance is earnest, precise, and gorgeous. I have a BFA in acting, I know what I’m talking about.
3) The characters! The one particular character flaw that made me laugh every time it appeared was the fact that the assistant manager is afraid of cardboard. I mean… What??! But it’s brilliant, and Mr. Gupta plays it so perfectly, I can’t. I just can’t. Watch it.
4) Look, I am running out of things to say. This is a wonderfully funny, extremely well done web series that you all must go watch, now. Below, embedded, is why.
5) I was going to bring this up as a negative, but now I think of it, it isn’t. Here’s my observation: Vicki Lewis’ character in this web series is exactly like her character Beth from Newsradio. But you know what? I can see that after that radio station closed, Beth may have had to get a job in a grocery store. So…it fits.
Bottom Line: This is your next comedy to watch regularly. Do it.
Okay, look: the stars of Checked Out are all recognizable from various other things. I’m not even going to bring their other credentials up. You know why? Because this is so awesome in its own right. You can see where you know them from online. All I am going to say is that it’s worth watching. More than that–I encourage you to watch. That is all.