Is The Odd Couple a Perfect Match for CBS' Primetime Line-Up?

The Odd Couple Series Premiere

They say that a classic never dies. And this Thursday, CBS took that old adage for a test drive with its debut of The Odd Couple, a reboot of the ’70s series based on Neil Simon’s play.

In this updated version, Friends‘ Matthew Perry stars as slobby radio DJ Oscar Madison, who takes in his uptight friend, Felix Unger (Thomas Lennon, Reno 911!), after Felix’s wife throws him out of the house.

It isn’t long before Felix’s neat-freak habits get under Oscar’s skin — not to mention the neediness, passive-aggressive notes and foul dinner recipes (what’s the point of meatless meatballs, anyway?).

Still, even though Felix might wear his heart on his sleeve more than Oscar does, the latter roomie is also grappling with some love-life issues — more specifically, he’s trying (and failing) to ignore just how much he misses his ex-wife, Gaby. Since two lonely hearts are better than one, Oscar and Felix opt to give their new living situation a second chance.

As long as Felix never cooks gazpacho again.

Much of The Odd Couple‘s pilot episode pays homage to its source material — “It took me two days to figure out that F.U. is Felix Unger!” is one such line from the Broadway play — but Perry and Lennon seem to have fun with this modern-day retelling, despite the decades-old story at its core.

But did you enjoy watching The Odd Couple? Grade the series premiere in our poll below, then hit the comments to back up your choice!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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87 Comments
  1. GuessWhat says:

    Sorry — thought it was pretty bad. Gave it a D.
    Any original ideas, Hollywood?!

    • RoscoLittle says:

      How about an original complaint. Like you are the first person to complain about sequels, prequels, remakes and reboots.

      I think Hollywood quite possibly ran out of new good ideas as (at least in movies) the franchise entertainment is the best.

      Fargo, From Dusk Til Dawn, Agent Carter, Agents of SHIELD, The Flash, Gotham and Constantine have all been great.

      And as surface level as NCIS New Orleans is, it has already been renewed for a second season.

    • Richard says:

      If you compare to the other comedies on CBS for the first episodes this one was better.

  2. Tom says:

    It was enjoyable, has potential

  3. Tran says:

    I give it an A. CBS has high hopes for The Odd Couple reboot but should get a big boost for a Big Bang lead-in.

  4. maria says:

    I enjoyed it. I hppe to see Matthew Perry have a little more variety in his facial expressions in future episodes, but otherwise it was pretty good.

    • Kim R says:

      I agree. I found Matthew a little one note but I think they will work the kinks out and get into their groove. Lots of potential. I’m in! :)

    • B says:

      agreed it felt like he was phoning it in but the series has potential

    • brandi says:

      I too found Perry a bit rough in this episode. It was like he was yelling all his lines. I’m going to keep watching. I thought Lennon was great and hopefully the kinks will get worked out. I really want something to work for Perry.

      • Harley says:

        Yes to this, I thought Mr. Perry was uncomfortable, especially in the first 15. It eased a little as the episode went on, but it was still rough. It was like he was trying to do Chandler’s impression of Oscar. Lennon’s performance only seemed to magnify Perry’s awkwardness….

  5. Steven says:

    its really good! Good work CBS

  6. c-mo says:

    I enjoyed it and found much at which to laugh out loud. At times Perry seemed comfortable with the gruff Oscar role but at others it seemed a little forced. Lennon was fantastic in the role of Felix. I will add this show to my DVR series list.

  7. JBC says:

    I enjoyed it! I remember the old show and loved it. This was funny. I think it will do well.

  8. rowan77 says:

    I was surprised, but the one I didn’t like was Matthew Perry. He felt very forced. You could tell what sounded like Neil Simon, what sounded like Danny Jacobson (Mad About You). I gave it a C, I’m willing to give it shot for a few weeks. Sometimes people just need to settle into their parts.

  9. Ralph says:

    Felix is WAY over the top and needs to be toned down. Love Matthew Perry, just not feeling this show. Rather watch reruns of the classic series

  10. Eh… It had some good, it had some bad.

    Cripes, it’s the pilot equivalent of the Facts of Life theme song.

  11. Jimmy says:

    Not a funny moment in this lame remake.

  12. linda says:

    I’m sure if it weren’t a remake people would have loved it. The jokes were very funny. I have high hopes. I loved it

  13. Jo jo says:

    It was funny and I will watch

  14. Babybop says:

    I love Matthew Perry. And I mean love (I’m a loyal Friends fan). My family still misses Go On and quotes it all the time. While this show made me chuckle, it was just okay. It just seemed superficial to me. I’ll stick around for hopes it gets better.

  15. david says:

    Matthew Perry woefully miscast…bring MOM back to 8:30

  16. jenferner8 says:

    I adore Matthew so I’ll watch him in anything. I liked this enough to keep watching. I like the chemistry between the guys, I like the sister and her chemistry with Felix but it felt like the blonde was overacting.

  17. James D says:

    meh. i think it was good enough to earn another watch, but it felt very forced to me and it tried way to hard to be like the Matthau and Lemmon version. I’ll give it an episode or two to see if it finds it’s footing. the two leads are certainly talented enough to make this into something very funny.

  18. Frozen Canuck says:

    I thought Matthew Perry was pretty bad in the pilot. He sounded like he was reading lines. Maybe he is out of practice.

  19. Monica says:

    Have they re-used the set from Frasier????

    • David4 says:

      I thought the same thing! They clearly used that set design for this show.

    • tara says:

      I thought the same as soon as I saw it! I bet they did.

    • Farris says:

      I would bet good money on it. Said the exact same thing.

    • Beerchick says:

      THANK YOU!!! My husband and I watched only a few minutes of the show, and my first comment was that they used the set from Frasier. It may not be exactly the same, but it is 90% there. I’m glad I’m not the only one who thinks that way!

      • TV Gord says:

        I watch Frasier reruns every day and I don’t see it. Please explain the resemblance so I don’t think you’re all blithering idiots. :-)

        • dkace says:

          Let’s see ( what you dont!)
          Leaving Room ocragon, with big screens that see the town.
          Step to reach the windows.
          Balcony door on the left.
          Corridor on the left that leads to the beadrooms.
          Right area, elevated, used as dinning area.
          Kitchen located on the right of the leaving on an angled wall
          Kitchen bench on the front, square bench in the middle. Fridge on the right. Only kitchen has changed place.

          I am pretty sure you have never seen Frasier!!!!

          If not, please find a downstream or see the reruns!

          BR,

    • Loubard says:

      I’m sure they did. The location of everything is in the same spot, just different items.

      The bar they hang out at is the same set used in How I Met Your Mother.. they sit at the same booth.

    • krashman71 says:

      It sure looks like it to me.

  20. Madeleine B. says:

    I’m a fan of Mathew Perry from Friends where he acted naturally. In this he’s delivering his lines unrealistically and like he’s shouting. In fact they almost all seem to be shouting, except the women. I know he can do better.

  21. Mike Q says:

    They kill the Mentalist and give this drek a slot. I was out less than 5 minutes in it was so bad. Matthew Perry could destroy a Friends reunion at this point.

  22. michael says:

    Perry just seemed like an older Chandler Bing in his mannerisms and the way he delivered his lines. The episode did get better once the double date started, but overall the show didn’t impress me. Bring back the McCarthy’s. I definitely don’t think the odd couple would last more than a couple episodes without the Big Bang Theory lead in.

  23. David4 says:

    It was pretty bad, not the worst thing ever, but bad. Just there, not funny, just a time waste.

  24. morefaves says:

    I’m a Huge Odd Couple TV show fan. So this show already had a tough hill to climb, comparing to that great show. First result, GIANT fail. Show was not nearly New York City enough. Perry was far too neat and polished for Oscar Madison, and he was too Chandler. The Felix Guy was just pathetic, and missed all the hidden charm of Tony Randall. And Why change the names of their exes??? Gabby??? Makes no sense. At least make the 2 dates British. I’ll watch again to see if there are any improvements, but I’m not optimistic.

  25. alex alcaraz says:

    I love matthew perry but i was prepared to be bored i was however pleasantly surprised. I enjoyed it!

  26. Nobrun says:

    Oh brother! Good actors working with one very lame script. This show should go straight to the toilet. The garbage can is too good for it.

  27. Mark says:

    I enjoyed it and laughed at it. It wasn’t the best show ever, but few pilots are. I’m certainly willing to give it a few more chances to settle in.

  28. Bruce Bowen says:

    Great writing!! Matthew Perry and Thomas Lennon have wonderful chemistry. I tip my hat to the writers and the cast! I will watch every week! !:)

  29. The Odd Couple reboot got me missing Tony Randall and Jack Klugman and Jack Lemon and Walter Matthau who could actually act.

  30. TV Gord says:

    This episode was quite a bit different from the pilot I saw last August, which I thought was better. I wish they hadn’t felt the need to wedge in Yvette Nicole Brown this week (she was added later). This one didn’t have the flow that the original one did. Still, it’s a show worth sticking with. I agree with those who say Perry needs to tone it down a little. His overacting smacks of desperation, which was doomed HOW many of his sitcoms (delivered the Chandler would).

  31. RoscoLittle says:

    This is by far Matthew Perry’s most pedestrian show since Friends, but after a string of AMAZING shows that didn’t get a second season, could you blame Perry for allowing CBS to give him a 3 camera show for the masses?

    Some of the lines were written weak, and some of the reads were either bad or edited bad, but these are rythm things that will be ironed out as the show progresses.

    Matthew Perry is one of TV’s most enjoyable stars to watch, and the cast is chock full of great funny talent so I am sure this will become a long lasting hit. And I look forward to watching a lot more.

  32. mahduk says:

    Sorry. As funny as Thomas Lennon can be he’s no Tony Randall. This show is about what I expect from woefully average sitcoms these days.

  33. Great cast, terrible jokes. What a damn waste.

  34. Cardiac Kid says:

    Didn’t like it at all. Gave it a “D.” Matthew Perry was hard to believe as “Oscar” (he probably would have been a great Felix) and the other guy was just annoying – not annoyingly funny but irritating and not funny at all. The pretty lady companions were the only bright spots of the show otherwise I would have given it an “F”

  35. Dufaux says:

    I watched because I like Matt Perry and remember fondly the original. It was obvious to me that something was really off. It just is not funny. Actually it was so bad that I gave up and left a d will never come back.

    • RoscoLittle says:

      Why make such grand declarations? Will you feel important if the show get cancelled?

      Watch the first episode of Seinfeld. It feels like people writing for a school play and not a TV show. It often takes TV shows a couple episodes to find their legs. The first episode of Mike and Molly had all of the characters saying joke that were obviously written by the same person, and the rest of the show was a complete mess.

      This Odd Couple will easily get better.

      • David4 says:

        But we are grading the pilot, and it was one of the most useless unfunny things I have seen in a long time.

        However The Neighbors had the worst pilot in history and became one of the best comedies in the last several years.

        If it stays in the time slot I will watch it next week just because it’s one before Murder / Scandal.

  36. Gloria Barros says:

    Matthew Perry is long overdue for a change – I hope this succeeds because he and his partner ‘in crime’ deserve it!!!!

  37. GhostWolf says:

    It was okay. I don’t usually watch today’s comedies (prefer those from the 80s and earlier as well as the classics). I’ll give it a few more episodes.

  38. Mr. Smith says:

    Good show! Can’t wait to see more!

  39. Mike says:

    If you were a fan of the original show or had just watched a few episodes there is no way you found this pathetic remake palateable. I was actually looking forward to watching this show. I made it through the first 10 minutes before deleting the program from my DVR.

    • Vidiom says:

      I felt the same way but glad I decided to stay tuned in. After the first ten minutes it became tolerable. No masterpiece – but tolerable. I will give it a couple more episodes.

  40. clay says:

    The casting of Felix Unger was fantastic. Matthew Perry rendition of Oscar Madison was off, he seemed to be over acting. Matthew played the character all wrong. They should have cast a more gruff masculine actor. There was too much Chandler Bing in Oscar.

  41. Richard says:

    For the first show it was good. If I created this I would not be in a hurry to unite them so fast but this was better than most first shows. All in all CBS is running thin on comedies. Only a couple worth watching. They should consult with me on better twist of creativeness for future show ideas.

  42. Belle says:

    This show has major potential!! Remember “Seinfeld” was a low performer for a couple years and now look at it, we’re all watching reruns 20+ years late. If they do this show right I know it’ll be successful :)

  43. Claire says:

    I watched the old odd couple and thought this was a really funny updated version…I’ll continue to watch it..I think the chemistry is great between them.

  44. Jen says:

    I really enjoyed it. I see the potential. Amazing cast. Great to see Matthew Perry in a multi cam.

  45. Jamie says:

    Gave it a C. I see plenty in it and have high hopes that it succeed; fingers crossed the pilot isn’t an sign of things to come. I’m a bit bias I guess, I love watching Lennon in basically anything and grew up watching Friends so it sucks not to see Perry succeed (especially after Go On). Felt some of the forced jokes/points and the constant laughter track was too much although I hope it smooths out.

    I was entertained and when it comes to sitcoms that’s all I need to be a fan of a show. I’ve seen much, much worse pilots over the years get more than one season and I really hope The Odd Couple gets a chance to develop.

  46. GJ Ellenson says:

    They really need to tone down the laugh track, it just does not work for the lame jokes.
    Thought the writing was pretty weak and predictable. However, that being said I am willing to give it a few more views.

  47. GJ Ellenson says:

    I thought the writing was a bit weak, it did not ingratiate me into the characters. As well, they need to remove the laugh track, it is distracting and makes the show seem cheap. I will give it a chance though.

  48. James says:

    I just couldn’t buy Matthew Perry as Oscar Madison, he just doesn’t give off the right vibe. He’s not gruff enough. But even worse, Thomas Lennon is no Tony Randall…he sounds like he’s reciting lines. I was hoping for the best because I always liked the odd couple, but I’m afraid his was a disappointment to me.

  49. Jim says:

    Just okay…DEFINITELY not as great as the original version from the 1970s.

  50. Todd says:

    I watched till the opening credits. That was horribly unfunny.