It’s not until later in About a Boy — NBC’s new comedy that made an early debut Saturday — that we learn our protagonist actually has a soft side.
The series — based on a best-selling novel by Nick Hornby and the 2002 film of the same name — zeroes in on Will (New Girl’s David Walton), who once wrote a hit Christmas song and is now living the dream as a financially stable bachelor.
Just how far will the Casanova go to impress a lady? When he meets Dakota — a beautiful, cello-playing single mom of two — he joins her at a single parents group meeting and concocts a story about his own (non-existent) son that would rival even Barney Stinson’s best lies. (It involves the phrase “animal sacrifices.” He really sells it.)
Enter Fiona (Grosse Pointe Blank’s Minnie Driver), Will’s uptight new neighbor, and her 11-year-old son, Marcus (1600 Penn’s Benjamin Stockham), who is equal parts nerdy, lovable and the perfect way for Will to keep pretending he’s got a son of his own.
Naturally, Will’s cover is blown before too long, and his plan to woo Dakota via single parenthood crashes and burns. But, in an uncharacteristic turn of events, it’s his bond with Marcus that Will cares about most, and he repairs the friendship with an appearance at Marcus’ school talent show that a) rocks the house and b) finally shuts up those awful school bullies. (Who knew a One Direction song would ever get me teary-eyed?)
Viewers will hardly have to wait for another installment of the series: About a Boy will make its regular time-slot debut on Feb. 25 at 9/8c. With a genuinely funny script and convincing chemistry between its two leads, perhaps the comedy won’t have to move out anytime soon.
That’s what we think — now it’s your turn. Did you enjoy the Peacock Network’s newest comedy? Grade About a Boy via the poll below, then hit the comments to back up your choice.