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'One Big Happy' series premiere fan react: Baby, meet the boobtender

Season 1 | Episode 1 | “Pilot” | Aired Mar 17, 2015

In the premiere of One Big Happy, we meet Lizzy (Elisha Cuthbert) and Luke (Nick Zano), best friends since high school, when he knew she was gay before she did. They made a pact to have a baby together if they reached 30 and weren’t significantly involved. That time’s arrived and they’re “stupid” excited to start a family, but so far the insemination hasn’t stuck despite Luke’s ongoing, intimate relationship with a cup.

Then Luke has a meet-cute with Prudence (Kelly Brook), a British babe who knocks him off his feet. Following a whirlwind—scratch that, hurricane—romance, the two profess their love and tie the knot in Vegas to keep Prudence from being deported.

Lizzy is jealous and fearful of losing her best friend. She’s also pregnant. Can all three make One Big Happy, or will this three of a kind be trumped by the baby?

That’s the premise laid down in Liz Feldman’s pilot. Unfortunately, it’s laid down way too fast. The concept and the relationships would’ve been better served had they taken several episodes to stack the foundation.

Instead we’re knocked over the head with way too many info dumps. The characters give TMI to perfect strangers and say things to one another that they already know and would never say in a real-life conversation. Sure the audience may need those details, but there are far better ways to share them.

Fortunately, the primary cast makes up for the fast-forwarding. Elisha knows how to land a laugh, but she can also traverse Lizzy’s more emotional notes with ease. Zano is charming enough to make us believe his baby mama and bride would play tug-o’-war for him. And Kelly Brook’s bubbly personality and “effortless whimsy” makes her immediately likable, despite being the interloper.

Standing by their side are Lizzy’s sister Leisha (Rebecca Corry) and her brother-in-law Roy (Chris Williams). The relationship isn’t immediately apparent and the characters read as staid and stodgy compared to their counterparts. The couple seem more like Lizzy’s parents, despite an age difference of only 10 to 15 years, and are an ill fit energy-wise.

The person I’d like to see more of is Marcus (an unrecognizable Brandon Mychal Smith). His fun, flirtatious vibe would be welcome among the core trio. Fingers crossed his appearances won’t be so random. I say put him in the inner circle; make him a confidant and comedic foil for Luke. Lord knows, that man will need more testosterone in his life.

The pros and cons of the pilot are evenly met when you pit the warp-speed setup against the winning cast. Look past the verbal vomit of “telling” the opening story, and there are still plenty of laughs here. The banter is shrewd and sassy. With any luck, now that they’re past the intro awkwardness, we’ll see more of that fresh and frank dialogue.

Hopefully, despite its preemie start, the show will grow into One Big Happy. Like a newborn, it’s full of potential, but could turn to poop at any second. Time will tell, but I’m thinking positive.

Worth Repeating:

Luke: I’m doing it with a plastic cup, and what we do is not dishwasher-safe.

Lizzy: And sure I should have known I was gay when I named my cat Ellen.

Leisha: There he is with that boobtender.

Leisha: It’s not Immaculate Conception; she’s not having the next Jesus.
Roy: How cool would that be, though? I mean, Jesus. Now that’s a nephew.

Lizzy: Prudence, Luke is the father.
Prudence: No, Lizzy. Darth Vader is the father.

One Big Happy airs Tuesdays at 9:30/8:30C on NBC.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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