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August 31, 2015

The Goode Family gets gooder with episodes two and three

by Danny Gallagher, posted Jun 5th 2009 10:02AM
The Goode FamilyThe premiere episode of ABC's The Goode Family didn't do a great job of giving its titular family the kinds of three-dimensional emotions and motivations that make them more than just two-dimensional characters.

It seemed to doom the whole series to the bland, predictable taste of a tofu hot dog.

Last Wednesday's double feature of Goode Family episodes gave the family and even some of the lesser characters more depth and funnier situations. The Goode Family may not be so bad after all.

The second and third episodes presented very funny situations that challenged the family to face their beliefs in the context of the rest of the world and even within their own family. It also expanded on some of the characters' behaviors and motivations and made them seem like more than just a gaggle of granola-eating hippies.

The first episode features the Goode's adopted South African son Ubuntu getting his big shot on the high school football team, an episode that seemed very promising since the title alone, "Pleatherheads," made me laugh. I'm a sucker for a funny title. That probably explains why I also like porn, sort of.

Ubuntu becomes the team's star tight end and almost immediately becomes the star player because he can create the kind of blockage that only a Double Quarter Pounder value meal can replicate. This brings Helen's red state father Charlie from behind the curtain and unveils some of the motivations that can turn Helen into a jabbering mental patient. She's clearly running from her father and his meat-eating, gun toting, racist ways but is willing at the same time to seek his affections without compromising herself or her family. This dynamic creates some great tension between the two with the Goode patriarch Gerald often caught in the crosshairs and helps the comedy float faster to the surface.

This dynamic carries over to the second episode, "Goodes Gone Wild" (again, made me laugh, but not because it sounds like porn). Helen is stuck with a hideous adopted pet that only someone like Charlie can adore, and it drives her to seek her father's approval, even if the pet gives her entire family ebola. The pet alone, nicknamed Gutterball, was worthy of laughter. This hideous, green drooling, partially shaved blob of an animal got a lot of laughs from me and it didn't even have any lines. It's dumb, expressionless face interspersed with its ability to pick its nose with its tongue was very funny all by itself. It reminded me of why I admire Mike Judge and company's work so much. There is just as much wit and humor to be found in the design and imagery as there is in the script.

The same can also be said for porn.

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Claudace Staples

I like to laugh but this show isn't funny. Y'all think making fun of colored folks for being poor + needy is funny? Like White people aren't ever poor or needy in America. Or on welfare or SSI/D or unemployment. Nice try at racist propaganda. Doesn't hold weight in the real world or this economy. This show ain't no good. Total misfire. Ubuntu. Is. A. Dumb. Character. Too scared to put a real Black character on the show, eh? Figures.

June 16 2009 at 8:13 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
John Altschuler

Hi! I'm The executive producer and Co-Creator of "The Goode Family." I appreciated the skeptic but positive posts on this site and wanted to tell you that it will be worth the effort to hunt down the remaining episodes of "The Goode Family." We really found a groove and I belive every episode gets better and better. Also, don't know where you will see episodes like the next one where Gerald and Helen accidentally enslave their Burmese house guest. Hopefully we will find a way to keep the show going and even if your posts turn negative on the show, I'm sure they will be fun to read.

June 08 2009 at 6:59 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Still strikes me as a little too much like a bizarro "King of the Hill"... but since Fox dicked around with that show much and no one watched, I guess that's ok.

June 05 2009 at 1:34 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Yeah, I thought those episodes were WAY better than the pilot. Really funny stuff, especially Gutterball.

June 05 2009 at 12:25 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Michael's comment

Really enjoyed both episodes, so much better than Sit Down, Shut Up...

It's definitely an enjoyable show, and I can see myself becoming more and more of a fan of it. ABC is really doing well with comedy lately. They brough back Scrubs, gave us Better Off Ted and now this show. Good work ABC.

June 05 2009 at 12:48 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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