Amazon Studios debuted its third pilot season Thursday (Aug. 28), which means its newest pilots are available to review and rate on Amazon’s website.
Today I examined the three comedies that are up for review: “The Cosmopolitans,” “Red Oaks” and “Really.” They are all very different, but my overall feeling is I hope they are all turned into series.
1. ‘The Cosmopolitans’
This is Wilt Stillman’s first foray into TV and as such, it is a highly stylized look at a group of American ex-pats living in Paris. It was filmed on location and is visually stunning. However, the quirky comedy is not for everyone. I didn’t find myself laughing out loud much during this, though I did find myself continually smiling throughout its run, so that’s better than my reaction to some network pilots. If I had to choose one comedy not become a series, it would be this one, though I sincerely hope they all do. But it’s third on my personal list.
This comedy about a group of 30-something friends who are coupled up in various ways was a humorous but also frank look at married life. The cast is great and the writing is sharp, plus the storylines set up in the brief 25-minute pilot have me really interested in finding out more about the characters.
3. ‘Red Oaks’
This is a coming-of-age story set in 1985, as a young man preparing for college works his last summer at home at a ritzy country club. Craig Roberts plays the young man in question and he’s infinitely likable as the directionless David who just wants to figure out who he is and what his life should be. Paul Reiser plays a tough, snobby club member, Jennifer Grey and Richard Kind play David’s parents and Oliver Cooper is a stand-out as David’s pot-smoking best friend. If you liked “Meatballs,” “Wet Hot American Summer,” “Dirty Dancing” or other movies of that ilk, you’ll really enjoy “Red Oaks.” It was my favorite of the comedy pilots.