On paper, it looks like a retread of Two and a Half Men, but this sitcom is a lot sweeter and smarter -- even if a lot of the characters are over-the-top wacky in a way that recalls Community. The gym, in particular, is staffed with a variety ot types who seem calculated to offer a particular brand of comic relief, most particularly the blunt, clueless Ruby (Fortune Feimster), who sums up her feelings about being caught doping in the 2004 Olympics with this excuse: "How else are you supposed to throw a hammer? Hammers are heavy!" Vince, too, is a bit of a sitcom stereotype; the silver-tongued rake who effortlessly bags women who should be way out of his league, yet has a heart of gold somewhere deep inside.
Yet we haven't seen a character like Michael on TV before, or if we have, it hasn't been often enough. Proudly gay, unashamedly a high school misfit, this Les Miserables-quoting, cranky, torch song-loving teen is a quirky, complicated, confident breath of fresh air, and he gets all the best lines. "I'm tired of being cooped up here like Belle, Tangled, Sleeping Beauty," he complains to his dad about living in a small apartment. His chemistry with Kaling's Priya and his uncle is sweet and relatable, and viewers will want to see how this plucky not-always-likable character fares in the big city. With him at the center of the action, Champions is a winner.