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‘The Other Two’ is the new predictor of pop-culture absurdity
The show’s also scathing in its takedown of social media and fandoms.
When the show premiered in 2019, it was initially about ChaseDreams (Case Walker), a young Justin Bieber-esque singer with a hit single, and his family’s struggle to adjust to sudden fame. His older brother Cary (Drew Tarver) and sister Brooke (Heléne Yorke) are the titular other two, and Molly Shannon plays mom Pat, who becomes a popular daytime talk show host.
In season 3, which concludes this week, Cary and Brooke are in the spotlight as they desperately try to figure out how they’re going to get famous. Cary’s plotline is especially pertinent: He’s finally seeing some success with a string of middling TV and film roles, including a Netflix fantasy show he’s just accepted will be bad. When it’s 100 percent fresh on Rotten Tomatoes, he can’t believe it: “My bad show is good?” he says to the camera, his voice taking on a demonic tone.
Earlier this month, a live-action Bambi movie, directed by Sarah Polley, was announced. As noted on Twitter, The Other Two already parodied this announcement in season 2, when Chase is cast as Thumper in a Bambi live-action film, which Brooke assures will be like the original but “cost more and look worse.” Elsewhere, Cary is hired to be in a Disney animated film as its first queer character, and people found some timely parallels there, too.
The 30 Rock comparison tracks: Lorne Michaels is a producer and former SNL writers Chris Kelly and Sarah Schneider created the show. But The Other Two is now being referenced on its own in regards to real shows that seem like they’re from the Other Two universe, like a new Zooey Deschanel Max show called What Am I Eating?
“I love how we have created a fake 30 Rock show to fake The Other Two show pipeline,” said one tweet.
The show’s also scathing in its takedown of social media and fandoms. In one episode, Chase falls for a non-famous girl and his fans get upset, so label exec Shuli (Wanda Sykes) and Brooke suggest sending her to live in the woods so fans don’t “Dox her to death.” Elsewhere, they conspire to remake Chase as a “bad boy” to appeal to fans, and when that doesn’t work his transformation into a “bad man” is truly inspired. When Shawn Mendes released a new song during the Canadian wildfires, it got a lot of The Other Two comparisons.
Why it matters
The Other Two has been great all three seasons, but this current one is where it felt like it really found its rhythm. Unfortunately, a lot of shows get canceled before they get to that point now.
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