The Great Indoors Recap Series Premiere

The Great Indoors: Is Joel McHale's New Comedy a Worthwhile Adventure?

The Great Indoors‘ Jack Gordon is the outdoorsy type, a Gen-Xer who prefers hanging out with bears in the wild and who thinks that people still fax. The digital division of Outdoor Limits magazine are social media whizzes who unironically love participation trophies.

The tug of war between the two factions is at the heart of the new CBS comedy, which premiered Thursday and which mocks both stuck-in-the-old-ways Jack and thin-skinned millennials like his new co-workers Clark (Superbad‘s Christopher Mintz-Plasse), Emma (Christine Ko) and Mason (Shaun Brown). Whose side you take likely depends on in what decade you were born. And in a moment, we’ll want to know what you thought of the new series. But first, a quick recap:

Career adventure journalist Jack returns to the magazine at the behest of editor in chief Roland (Bones‘ Stephen Fry), who’s got some bad news: Outdoor Limits is about to stop printing its paper edition and will be, from here on out, an online-only publication. That means no more funded expeditions into the wilderness for Jack, whom Roland expects to oversee the enthusiastic (yet young) digital content team.

This new position is met with mixed emotions on both sides; Jack’s hesitance to create a social media footprint means “It’s like he doesn’t even exist,” Emma remarks, while Jack complains to his bar-owning friend Eddie (Chris Williams, Silicon Valley) that his new assignment is lame. But Eddie points out that Jack might learn something from the kids, because”They’re smarter than you think they are. They hustle and know how to make money.”

Jack’s boss in this new endeavor is Brooke (British actress Susannah Fielding), Roland’s daughter, with whom Jack hooked up at a corporate retreat a while back. Things are rough for a while — Jack makes Clark cry, for instance — but the aging writer later brings a baby bear into the office and everyone makes nice as they’re all inspired to create new content that will engage readers. Oh, and Jack learns that it was Brooke’s idea to install him in the Chicago home office, which is interesting.

Now we want to know what you thought about The Great Indoors. Grade the premiere via the poll below, then hit the comments to expand your thoughts. 

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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31 Comments
  1. c-mo says:

    I was very skeptical asked on your review but I have to say that I found it highly entertaining! I’ll definitely be back next week.

  2. Kevin K says:

    I give The Great Indoors a C. Not funny nor entertaining but it will depend if it’s going to get a big boost for TBBT lead-in like what Life in Pieces did last season.

  3. Angela says:

    Jack’s initial resistance to the group is rather similar to that of Jeff Winger at the start of “Community”, but that aside, I do like this cast and think they could gel rather well as time goes on. I particularly liked the interaction between Jack and Mason, and the bit with Clark and Jack at the bar towards the end was kinda sweet. I like Brooke herself, but I’m not entirely sure about the chemistry between her and Jack yet. Kind of a wait and see thing. Whether they ever put them together properly or not, though, I would like to see them develop a nice friendship.
    .
    The generation issues stuff definitely needs some fleshing out, though. But there were a couple cute zingers here and there, so we’ll see how that goes with time. I’ll keep watching and see how this show develops over time :).
    .
    Also, that baby bear was frickin’ adorable.

  4. Cindy says:

    So, so bad. Did not laugh once. Not even a chuckle. Not even a smile.

  5. Jules says:

    Not that great….only watch for SFry & was hoping that could save the rest…sadly, keep asking myself “Oh Stephen, Why did you agree to do that series?”

  6. Papandreou says:

    Worst comedy in a while. Wish they would move Mom to 8:30 and create a powerhouse block.

  7. Mike says:

    Loved it just one point its not so much war with millennials but with hipsters I am a millennial and nothing like this.

    • Eli says:

      It’s not about Gen-X vs millenials but more about those people ho are so techy and plugged in vs the rest of the world. I see so many Gen-Xers who are way too much into the latest apps and gizmos and can’t stand to stay away from facebook, twitter, instagram and the likes.

  8. Kristina says:

    Pretty good; not great but really enjoyed Stephen Fry and Joel McHale as always, and Chris Williams is a nice addition. I think it has potential.

  9. Steve C. says:

    Does the actress who plays Brooke look like Alison Brie? It’s like Jeff Winger misses Annie Edison so he had a night one stand with this body double.

  10. Maxsmom says:

    it’s the pilot so I will watch next week to see if the show remains Joel McHale and the less interesting Community 2 players. the ensemble is boring because they are bowling pins waiting to be knocked down by McHale’s one liners which he has been honing since The Soup. There is a germ of an idea here but so far the execution is poor.

  11. Mark says:

    I enjoyed it. Too one note so far, but I see the potential for some fun here, and I did laugh.

  12. Eva says:

    I give it a B, because I’m a sucker for generation gap jokes. And Joel McHale is the best.

  13. peterwdawson says:

    Eh, it’s not as bad as I feared, but it’s still not great. For some reason I kept being reminded of Outsourced too.

  14. John NYC says:

    I’ll be back. There’s potential shown in the pilot so I’ll be watching to see where it goes.

    “Human DSL”; had some good lines.

  15. cuius says:

    Your C+ was a bit generous – assume the audience had stayed on from an episode of The Late Show

  16. Tracy says:

    As I voted, it was OK. Amusing. I’ll give it two more airings before making a decision.

  17. Walkie says:

    Tired of McHale playing the angry guy who thinks his better than everyone.

  18. Collette says:

    Yikes! It’s like Seinfeld in that there isn’t a single likable character. Even Stephen Fry is boring. I love Joel but this was bad.

  19. dlraetz says:

    Better than CBS other freshman comedies

  20. Luis Roman says:

    I laughed far more often than I thought I would. McHale is an engaging personality and carries off the premise fairly well. i don’t know if the show has legs, but I’ll always be grateful for the privilege of seeing Stephen Fry talk about carrying his sherpa down K-2, just about the most un- Stephen Fry thing I can imagine.

  21. Michael says:

    Absolutely awful! I had it on and couldn’t believe they put such a POS show on TV. The line at the end where he said the bear ate the emotional support dog was not funny in the least. The only reason I had it on was because it was between “Big Bang Theory” and “Mom”. Otherwise, I wouldn’t even have bothered. Now I know for next week not to watch it and to record the other two shows. I do have a question for the writers. Do you actually think the crap you write is funny and do you actually get paid to write such unfunny and incoherent crap!

  22. Troy1986 says:

    Setting reminds me of “Suddenly Susan”

  23. Preacher Book says:

    While envious of holding a baby bear, a dose of reality. Once at a zoo with an employee friend, she let me watch as they fed a hungry baby bear. That little cutie shredded a thick leather apron the keeper was wearing in its eagerness to be fed. Imagine what it might do to a few young adults if they aren’t careful. Jack was right when he said, in a bear attack, you die. No, just die.

  24. Robert Melvin says:

    The Great Indoors, not that great. Actually it felt a little strange, a world I wish to avoid or escape from. I could relate to the main character, and after meeting the Millennials my reaction was to move to Patagonia as fast as possible to get away from The Great Indoors.

  25. jj. says:

    I think tvline’s C+ review was being generous, to me this was just bad. Cliche writing, predictable one liners, and somehow stephen fry’s character was just boring. I’m a fan of Joel McHale so I wanted to like this show but I couldn’t finish the episode