Welcome to the first edition of Bad Shows, Good Actors, the series where I highlight a talented individual who is unfortunately stuck on a less-than-excellent show. Today’s shining star is Giovanni Ribisi.
Since the start of his career in 1985, Ribisi has been featured on many different television shows. While this is not necessarily a bad thing, only a few of them stuck. His last long-running role was on My Name is Earl, and before that he had a recurring role on Friends as Phoebe Buffay’s younger brother. I knew he was talented simply by his approach to the role of Frank Jr. on Friends, but clearly his diversity speaks for itself.
Every year I give a few new sitcoms a shot. Dads was one of my 2013 hopefuls which quickly disappointed me when it came to writing and acting. Everything about it felt cheesy and the jokes were stereotypical, at best, and were too mind-numbing to be considered offensive. Racist stereotypes, short-guy stereotypes, old people stereotypes – honestly, you name a stereotype and it has probably been prominently featured as a gag on Dads. One of the only things (if not THE only thing) that makes Dads almost worth watching, is Giovanni Ribisi’s brilliant comedic timing and hilarious delivery. He is charming and excellent in this brown-paper-bag of a show. Despite the likelihood of Dads getting cancelled, I hope Ribisi finds himself another home in the prime-time spotlight.