2 weeks in to The Crazy Ones with Robin Williams and I am ready to say that I’m in. The show is good. I was worried about how Robin Williams was going to be on the show and was worried that he would be doing his cocaine addled schtick that wears thin very quickly but I have to say, he’s been great.
Executive Producer David E. Kelley has said that they wanted to control Robin Williams while still giving him some freedom to improvise and be Robin Williams. During production, they shoot all scenes two times. First as scripted, and a second time giving Williams the freedom to improvise with his co-stars. So far, his cast mates have been able to keep up with him with one notable exception. Sarah Michelle Gellar.
I’m not going to hit her too hard because playing the straight man is not something that is easy to do. A good straight man or break a foil (that’s the funny guy to non-acting folks). It takes a lot of talent to pull of a good straight man act and SMG does not have that talent. That’s ok though because the rest of the cast picks up for Gellar. My hope as this show continues to grow and develop is that they stop trying to bounce Williams off Gellar and start to focus on his relationship with his 2 creative guys played by James Wolk (Mad Men) and Hamish Linklater (The Newsroom). Those two guys have been able to interact wonderfully with Williams and are at this point the key reason that this show is going to be successful.
If you haven’t watched The Crazy Ones yet, do yourself a favor and get in to the show. It’s not one that has deep story lines so you can jump in pretty much at any time and you’ll be fine. You can watch the premiere episode online at CBS.com if you want to get caught up.
The Crazy Ones airs on CBS on Thursdays at 8:00.