Parents' Guide to

Working the Engels

By Joyce Slaton, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Schticky sitcom wastes appealing actors on shrill laffs.

TV NBC Comedy 2014
Working the Engels Poster Image

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Watching Working the Engels is exhausting, because the family members never act normally when sitcom-schticky antics are possible. In the show's pilot, Ceil breaks a leg falling off the family's first-story house in a failed suicide attempt. Later, her son is bringing her home from the hospital, with her crutches propped across her wheelchair, and he runs her into the side of the house and the side of the car, she drops a crutch and runs over it, and on and on. Sigh. Andrea Martin is a genius, and she deserves better. In fact, all the actors on the show are appealing and have good comic timing; the problem is, they're called upon to act like frantic sitcom characters, spitting out weak jokes at a machine-gun pace, rather than real people. What a pity.

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