'Avenue 5' Episode 1: This sci-fi adventure is a treat right from the start with its morbid sense of humor
The show takes us onboard a spacecraft that houses hundreds of rich people on a space-cation for eight weeks and things start going awfully wrong
'Avenue 5' is off to a splendid start. Or not. The latest HBO show starring Hugh Laurie is something that someone with a twisted sense of humor can enjoy.
The more outrageous the situation, the more hilarious it gets onboard the spacecraft that houses hundreds of rich people who are on a space-cation. This is set in the future where traveling around Saturn with a great view of its rings is something that can be done. You can also watch asteroids pass why while doing some yoga. There is great food, some entertaining activities and if things go according to plan, travelers would be left with an otherworldly experience.
When have things ever gone according to plan though?
So when Joe, the engineer of Avenue 5 is out traipsing about in space trying to fix the delay in communication between Earth and the spacecraft, an incident occurs. There's no gravity anymore and so people onboard fly across different surfaces in the spaceship without any gravity supporting them.
Joe, who was outside trying to fix an issue that cannot be fixed, tells Billie McEvoy, the second engineer, to rest the switch. But because she doesn't give him a heads-up, he ends up getting stabbed by his own screwdriver in the heart. Usually, death is not funny, but then we have morbid humor. And the show captures morbid humor with ease.
It is definitely not a great start because there are portions that need more depth. For instance, the man who owns Avenue 5, Herman Judd, is clueless about how things work in his ship. So the more he tries to understand the situation, the more hilarious it gets. That's not nailed in the first episode at least.
However, we do have some killer scenes with Laurie's character Ryan Clark confessing that he is not a real captain and Matt Spencer (Zach Woods) having a breakdown when passengers hound him for more details.
He is definitely not good at customer service and when Karen calls him a useless "a-hole", she is right. That is however why we need him on board — just for the laughs! When a passenger asks if they need to be worried, he says you can be if you want. This is the point when you want to punch him in the face, but it brings out the "bad customer service" angle without breaking the rhythm.
Captain Ryan, who was brought on board by the now-dead engineer, doesn't know anything about what is wrong and neither does he have any idea how to get things back on track. He claims that the only thing he can do is to motivate the crew of the spacecraft to work together and come up with a solution.
As of now, the gravity flip has knocked Avenue 5 of course and going by the current trajectory, it is going to take the team three years to get back home. The spacecraft is not built to float around space for that long and neither can the passengers last that long with the currently available resources. So what will the fake captain do now?
Also, have you heard of 'Happy Tree Friends'? The humor in 'Avenue 5' is quite similar. Only we have Laurie, who is actually English but fakes his American accent to be more acceptable, dole out the humor.
There is a lot to look out for in Episode 2. 'Avenue 5' airs on HBO on Sundays at 10 pm ET.