Lunchtable TV Talk: Survivor’s Remorse

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While I never heard of it and find the title a bit strange (survivor’s guilt? buyer’s remorse? I can sort of see the strains of this… but somehow it seems like its title would be better for the underrated and already canceled Getting On, while this show could easily be called Getting On…) for a basketball drama, I decided to dig in and watch after Survivor’s Remorse appeared on a few 2015 best-of lists. I would not go so far as to put it atop any best lists, but it’s rather entertaining.

The show riffs a bit on the family drama – a gifted young athlete becomes an almost overnight millionaire and his family tags along when he moves to the Atlanta team. We’ve seen stuff like this, but most dramas explore the exploitative aspects of the family (the family milks the athlete for all he is worth). You get a taste of that here, but mostly the family is close and the strength of that keeps it all together.

Nice to see the actress, Teyonah Parris, who played Mad Men’s first black secretary, Dawn, land here in a big supporting role. The show is ostensibly a comedy but quite handily deals with some serious issues, making light of divisive matters. Comedy flows, sometimes from the strangest places, but nowhere is it more consistent and hilarious than with the family uncle, Julius. Julius is a bit of a loser/hanger-on but always tells it like it is (usually in a way that’s comical). I won’t cite examples – it’s worth you watching yourself to see him ride with local police to chase down a ne’er-do-well bicycle thief, to watch him using his nephew’s new fame to score with a bunch of women or to see him go to a store to find a “dog repellent” and find one called “K Nein”.

I can’t say that the main character inspires much interest at all – but everyone around him is worth viewing, from the aforementioned uncle to the main character’s sister, Mary Charles, from crazy DeShauwn to the Chinese shoe “captain of industry” Da Chen Bao. They are worth watching.

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