Fox's Dads has been hailed as the most offensive new show of the fall, both by criticsand by the network itself (yay for spin marketing!). But while offensive humor certainly has its merits, the "humor" portion is a necessary component for it to do so. Dads is offensive without being funny — and that's the show's biggest problem.
In the premiere episode alone, Dads managed to disparage Asians, women, gays and Muslims, among others (don't worry, Jews get their turn in Episode 2). But the one-liners land with a clunk rather than a zing. In case you didn't watch the premiere, here's a rundown of the most eyebrow-raising jokes. Did it live up to the hype? You be the judge!
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1. Crawford (Martin Mull) asks his son's wife Camila (Vanessa Lachey) to pretend to be his secretary on a phone call and then tells her, "Gracias, muchacha."
2. Asian employee Veronica (Brenda Song) on her upbringing: "You're lucky your dads are American. My dad beat me with a math book until I was 16."
3. In the pilot's most notorious scene, Song's character comes out dressed as an Asian schoolgirl in order to impress some Chinese investors. She's greeted with a "Whooo!" track and a leering "Well hello, kitty" from her boss, Warner (Giovanni Ribisi).
4. Crawford: "I just came from a very interesting meeting with an outfit that owns the copyright to black Santa Claus, of all things." (Cue massive laugh track.)
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5. Crawford: "They're gonna go global. In fact, today they are meeting with some Orientals." And later: "The Chinese are lovely and honorable people, but you can't trust them. There's a reason Shanghai's a verb." Though these one-liners are (presumably?) intended to be funny because Crawford is so out-of-touch with political correctness, the show also opts to give the investors stereotypical "Godzirra"-esque accents in a scene, and sets them up to be fawningly impressed with Eli (Seth Green) because he's a "rock-and-roll American who rides a motorcycle."
6. Crawford: "It would have been a billion dollar deal if somebody had told me the correct pronunciation is 'Shi'ite Muslim.'"
7. David mistakes Camila for Warner's maid.
8. Crawford suggests "Punch the Puerto Rican" as a name for a video game.
9. Crawford: "This is their ethnically and sexually diverse workplace. Where's your gay guy? Show me your gay guy?" (Warner points to a man sitting at a desk.)
So, what did you think? Is Dads offensively funny or just plain offensive? Take our poll, and sound off in the comments!