Saturday, September 18, 2010

The League: She-dre

     FX's sitcom The League began it's second season by heading to Las Vegas for "Vegas Draft".  It was a neat idea to take the show on a trip out of town in the very first episode back, and it played to the show's strength: namely, when the five main guys just hang out together.  The sixth primary character, Jenny (Katie Aselton), also got satisfying plot, but we'll get to that in a second.  The episode featured Chad Ochocinco, a wide receiver for the Cincinnati Bengals, who can actually act.  At least, he can while playing himself.  I don't care a lick about sports, and so was not excited by this casting get.  However, he added the fun, not detracted from it as some athlete turned actors do, and so I have no complaints about his appearance.

     I don't actually have any complaints about this episode at all.  Andre (Paul Scheer), last year's League Champion, decided to take the group to Vegas to pick their teams this year.  Of course, Pete (Mark Duplass) took the credit for the idea, and everyone else deferred to him.  The way the whole groups dumps on Andre is quite funny, but Andre never lets it defeat him.  Instead, he tries even harder to earn their respect.  For instance, in order to make sure attention was on him, Andre changed their believe Shiva trophy into one with a statue of him on top.  Which led the guys to combine the two names into a new nickname for Andre: She-dre.  But before the end credits rolled, the statue was broken, and part of Andre was in the actual Andre.

     Of course, all of the teasing wasn't against Andre.  Pete and Kevin (Stephen Rannazzisi) had plenty of other fun at Ruxin's (Nick Kroll) expense, too.  They created a game where they guessed famous people, and refused to tell Ruxin the rules.  They even were willing to be kicked out of a casino, rather than give up their secrets.  Taco (Jonathan Lajoie) still seems a little useless.  His only contribution to this week was turning Andre's cries of pain into a song.

     The character I felt got the shaft in the first season was Jenny, Kevin's wife.  Though she helped him with his picks, she was never part of the group, and so had a lot less to do.  The funny this is, she is probably a bigger football fan than her husband.  In this week's episode, she tried to join their gang, but they wouldn't let her.  Kevin was the biggest supporter of not letting her into the League.  It's a shame, really.  I love the guys' dynamic, but it would not have been hurt by allowing her to mix it up.  Jenny did have some fun, though, helping Ruxin with his draft, much to everyone else's dismay.

     If you'd like to check out The League, new episodes airs Thursday nights at 10:30 pm on FX.

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