Raina Deerwater ‘16 / Emertainment Monthly Staff Writer
Set in one of the wealthiest manors in Newport, Rhode Island in 1902, Comedy Central’s new show Another Period follows the lives of the obscenely rich and obscenely obscene Bellacourt family. It comes from the minds of Riki Lindhome (Garfunkel and Oats) and Natasha Leggero (Neighbors, Let’s Be Cops). The two also star as Beatrice and Lillian Bellacourt.
Shot in a style that mimics reality television, Another Period mercilessly mocks shows like Keeping Up With The Kardashians, while equally taking a stab at the Downton Abbey‘s of the world. In fact, there isn’t much the show won’t make fun of: it takes no time introducing an affair between siblings, an affair between the husbands of the Bellacourt sisters, and hints at many more scandalous going-ons in the Bellacourt household.
Though the pilot sometimes feels as if it is an extended Saturday Night Live sketch, the individual performers and jokes promise something more. One of the best gags is the fact that they refer to Hendricks’ lovely maid as “Chair” (Christina Hendricks). Though seemingly a dumb joke on paper, the commitment comes through for one of the best running gags on the show. With talent from Michael Ian Black to Jason Ritter, Another Period shows it has potential to be different and more outrageous than many other shows on the air.
It follows through in this potential in the series second episode “Divorce.” From “lawn-boating,” to comedically explicit sex scenes, to the line “I thought divorce was a legend, like the yeti or the working poor,” Another Period gets taken to a whole new level of comedy. Lindhome and Leggero are not afraid to make a joke anywhere where it is possible.
In “Divorce,” one of the ongoing and most outrageous plots involves a wealthy divorcée coming to the manor and “ravishing” a young servant lad. Though it may seem at first like this is played for laughs, the episode launches into a biting commentary of “ravish culture” and how it is routinely ignored. This piece of social satire is sandwiched between the physical and explicit comedy of Jason Ritter’s character discovering that he really loves it up the butt.
The humor in Another Period really is all over the place, but it works for what kind of show it is. For a parody to work really well, there can’t be a break between laughs and jokes. It’s not the kind of comedy where the characters are likable, so if the jokes don’t land, the show does not work. Luckily, by the second episode, the majority of the jokes do land, and the comedy is so fast paced that even the jokes that don’t land are quickly forgotten.
Coming from the minds of two women, and focusing on them, Another Period shows that there is so much room in the comedy world for women to be terrible people and terribly funny. Comedy Central’s Another Period is fast paced and unapolgetically funny, mocking the culture a century ago and the culture today, while leaving nobody safe from their biting parody and making us laugh along the way.
Another Period airs June 23rd on Comedy Central.