This is a Netflix Original series that stars Thomas Middleditch and Ben Schwartz as a series of characters within a long form improv show. This is presented in three roughly an hour long episodes. The core concept of the show is that the two come up on stage to introduce themselves, and then reach out to the crowd for a concept.
They use this concept as a basis for the scenario that they create together. They both take on various roles based on provided characters, and go all out to keep the flow of the situation going. It’s actually a rather tough idea to tackle, and they perform splendidly. I was more than pleasantly surprised as the coherence of the setups they create, and the comedic spots.
It’s actually rather hilarious the majority of the time and fun to see in action. There’s a good mix of both vocal, and visualized humor as they use essentially just chairs or themselves to convey a scene. Again, this type of thing takes a lot of talent definitely some chemistry. They both bounce off each other well, and it’s very exciting to see in action.
It’s somewhat hard to review this type of experience, as there isn’t necessarily a whole lot to it. There are some stand out moments, but to talk about them with depth sort of takes away the appeal of witnessing them yourself during a viewing.
I will say that some of the out of scenario meta was hilarious, especially in one spot where they don’t want to leave someone with a rather horrific message which was fun. As that part was arriving I was even thinking this was a particularly dark route for them to end up on. It’s nice to see they were able to adjust and leave something not so drab for that episode.
They create some very lively spaces, and bring some weird surprises that I’m not sure one would anticipate seeing. There’s always something new, and fresh with each episode. My main complaint here is that there isn’t more of it, it’s quite limited time wise and sort of just goes by. It would have also been neat to have switches in the stories to a small degree, or to have additional individuals to play off of but then it’s not a duo special.
Middleditch & Schwartz Season 1 brings some great laughs in an improv situation that’s very impressive to see unfold. I was surprised by the talent on display here and I’m sure you won’t be disappointed by venturing in here and watching them. The episodes will certainly fly by and you’ll probably be left wanting some more afterwards. I suppose it hits the sweet spot in that regard, though more would have been welcomed.
I think they nail the setups for the most part, and I’m surprised that this worked as well as it did. The two have excellent chemistry, and a great ability to switch things up on the fly. I also appreciated that they didn’t hold back in certain situations, and that made it almost that much more humorous. I hope that we get to see more of these two together in the future as the idea is sound, and works well as an easy to consume comedic bit for the streaming service.
Middleditch & Schwartz Season 1 Review at Home with Streamed Viewing
Screening was Provided by Netflix