- Report: DACA recipients increasingly being denied federal housing loans Friday 3:54 PM
- Chris Christie is finally getting praise—for turning down Donald Trump Friday 3:39 PM
- Net neutrality died last year. But the fight’s just begun Friday 1:18 PM
- Kim Kierkegaardashian creator says popular Twitter account ‘speaks to the duality in all of us’ Friday 1:02 PM
- Facebook admits that 6.8 million users’ private photos were exposed Friday 12:55 PM
- YouTube reviewer heads to homeless shelter to critique the food Friday 12:46 PM
- Viral video shows Brooklyn woman’s racist tirade and violent attack Friday 12:38 PM
- 7-year-old migrant girl dies in Border Patrol custody Friday 11:31 AM
- People are losing it after hearing the end of Ariana Grande’s new song ‘Imagine’ Friday 11:28 AM
- Failed Green party candidate was secretly behind this popular QAnon account Friday 11:05 AM
- Dude gets dunked on for claiming Keira Knightley’s ‘six pack’ makes her trans Friday 10:52 AM
- A theoretical tax on Bud Light has infuriated conservatives Friday 10:10 AM
- Tumblr is back on the iOS App Store as NSFW content ban looms Friday 10:10 AM
- Here’s why YouTube deleted 58 million videos and a ton of accounts Friday 9:43 AM
- The 25 worst passwords of 2018 Friday 9:27 AM
‘New Timers’ webseries brings wry humor to apocalyptic times
It’s not the only slow-burning, post-apocalyptic comedy you’re likely to find in webseries format, but it’s probably the best.
The newest in Comedy Central’s suite of webseries, New Timers, is not the only slab of slow-burning, post-apocalyptic humor you’re likely to find in this format. But it’s probably the best, and one that certainly knows its limits.
Not surprisingly, just because the webseries is the cheapest way of bringing certain ideas to life doesn’t meant that it’s the necessarily the most suitable. The landscape is littered with examples of efforts that, despite their best intentions, utterly missed the mark due to a poor understanding of the format.
I hate to preach, but sometimes it is necessary: If your idea looks like a good fit for a movie, it’ll have roughly the same chance of working in five-minute chunks that attempts to bring sketch comedy to the big screen have had so far. There are exceptions, of course, but sadly not everyone is Monty Python, and it seems like such a waste of effort to handicap your project from the outset.
But there are no such issues with New Timers—a concept that I suspect would be an absolute chore if we were exposed to its two naive and petty main characters for longer than the seven to 10 minutes of each episode. Within that time frame however, it holds up well; their concentration on the minutiae of their lives—making dip, arranging their apartment for a date (who is no doubt dead), and ruminating over power sockets—is slyly funny when coupled with their obliviousness of the civil war, famine, and annihilation of the human race that rages outside their apartment.
Conversations about dill (“Do we even have any?” “Oh yeah, so much”) while trying to shop in a burnt-out store hint at the show’s absurdity, but there’s a balancing vein of humanity as well. When Matt explains that he is now able to play his Sega Game Gear—a console that is inherently funny—because he has taken the batteries out of their “emergency torch,” Charlie’s indifference is as touching as it is odd. With Charlie finally realizing that he has been stood up by his date, the two both play.
New Timers is written by, directed by, stars Matt Porter and Charlie Hankin, whom you may know from Good Cop Great Cop, their series of weekly (often very) shorts. Across those videos, they showed a knack for nailing length—few of the videos outstay their humor—and so it is here; the unevenness of each episode length is a testament to a writing team who know when to call “cut” just when the laughs do.
Screengrab via Comedy Central/YouTube
Tom Harrington is an entertainment reporter whose work for the Daily Dot focused on webseries and streaming entertainment. He's reviewed series on YouTube and Netflix, and he was approximately four years ahead of the curve on comedian Joe Pera.