Orville – It Doesn’t Quite Know What it is, and That’s OK

When it was announced that Seth MacFarlane was going to be doing a sci-fi/Star Trek show I was pretty excited for it. Being a fan of Family Guy I thought his take on a parody of Star Trek would be pretty entertaining. But this show, although good, is not at all what I was expecting.

When I think “Seth MacFarlane” I immediately think dick and fart jokes, absurd premises, and lots of flashbacks, flash-forwards and sight gags. While Orville is funny it is not consistently funny moment to moment like MacFarlane’s other series. But at the same time it is not as stoic and serious as a typical sci-fi or drama series.

In fact, they typically skate this fine line between being a drama and a comedy, and there’s a variation on that from episode to episode. Some of the episode’s subjects are inherently a little lighter and funnier so thry rely less on drama. While others you get wrapped up in an interesting plot and you almost forget it’s supposed to be funny at times.  

None of this is meant to disparage the show in any way.  Not only are the show’s well made (it actually looks better than some of the serious sci-fi on tv) and often very funny, but they have also already touched on some interesting concepts of gender/gay rights and religion.  While the critics have been very harsh on the show, the fan response has been generally very positive. And as a fan of sci-fi, comedy and Seth MacFarlane I look forward to every new episode.

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