Cooper Barrett Cancelled

Cooper Barrett's Guide: Does the Fox Comedy Have What It Takes to Survive?

Don’t let the title of Fox’s newest comedy fool you: Cooper Barrett’s Guide to Surviving Life has little to no idea how to survive much of anything — at least not yet.

The oddball sitcom, which premiered Sunday, follows a trio of twentysomethings in the uncertain decade following college, and the hijinks that ensue as they attempt to strike out on their own.

The Parker Lewis Can’t Lose/Hangover-inspired hybrid takes place in present day, where our eponymous life guide Cooper (Jack Cutmore-Scott, Kingsman: The Secret Service) is being held captive by a group of rapscallions for a crime four years in the making. Breaking the fourth wall, he narrates a backstory that begins in 2011, as he and pals Neal (Charlie Saxton, Hung) and Barry (James Earl, Ground Floor) move into their first apartment. After Cooper’s older brother Josh (Justin Bartha, The New Normal) gifts them with a smart-TV, the guys agree to throw a wild housewarming party to appease the career man’s need to get away from his “fun-sucking” pregnant wife (Liza Lapira, Super Fun Night). The party quickly racks up hundreds of unwanted guests, and after consuming a handful of unmarked pills, the guys wake up to find their new TV has been stolen.

Two years later, the gang has seemingly moved on from caring about their stolen big-screen. Cooper is working for a barely-digestible energy drink company and has made good friends with girl-next-door Kelly (Meghan Rath, New Girl), Neal is in a (reluctant) committed relationship with a bodybuilder he met at the housewarming party, and Josh and his wife have settled down with two kids. Everything’s going well enough until Barry exits a movie theater and spots the alleged TV thieves. He persuades his friends to help him steal it back, but after a barely successful breaking and entering, the guys return home to discover that the TV they’ve just stolen isn’t actually theirs. This catches up with them two years later (aka the present day) after Cooper runs into the thugs they robbed at a Clippers game and is subsequently kidnapped. He’s eventually set free after Josh offers up a new 4K TV as a peace offering. (As it turns out, landlord Virgil — played by How I Met Your Mother alum Marshall Manesh — was the real TV swindler.)

Though ambitious, the framing device of Cooper Barrett‘s inaugural installment makes it difficult to determine how weak or strong the show might be without it. While it does a serviceable job setting up a potential romance between Cutmore-Scott and Rath’s characters, and makes good use of Ground Floor standout Earl, another episode or two is necessary to determine whether this Guide to Surviving Life can sustain any sort of sought-after longevity.

Will you survive another wild and crazy outing with Cooper Barrett? Grade the episode in our poll, then sound off in the comments.

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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  1. Jasie says:

    Looks like they need to get Last Man On Earth back on the lineup ASAP.

  2. Jerry says:

    It wasn’t too bad, but I’m confused on how the show is structured. Do all episodes jump around, or is it one time period? And if it’s one… Is it when they first move in together, or the current day? I’ll check it out next week to see how it goes

  3. Lynne says:

    Wasn’t too bad. I’ll give it another episode or two before I make my final decision.

  4. herman1959 says:

    When people leave comments like “it wasn’t too bad”, that usually means it wasn’t good.

    • Jerry says:

      Hah. True. It didn’t hook me but I’m intrigued enough for a second go. I want to see how the show is structured without the future framing device.

  5. Mr. Tran K says:

    100% horrible which makes people cringed.

  6. BillyBobJohnson says:


  7. Sooooh says:

    It was Hangover but done rather badly. The only thing that may keep this on air is FOX’s general woes. Let’s wait for the ratings.

  8. Jon says:

    Granted, I’m not the target demographic (18-24 white fratboys?) but this show was flop-sweat unfunny. Desperate, wacky “hijinks” but not one earned laugh. In fact, the only thing less funny last night was FOX’s awful “Bordertown.” They cancelled “American Dad” for this??

  9. Daniel says:

    I loved it. Cooper was funny, sarcastic, & very real. You don’t have to be laugh out loud funny all the time to be a comedy. When the show came together at the basketball game… I was like holy $&#% this show is REALLY good. I’m looking forward to getting to know Cooper Barrett & seeing this show evolve. ✊✊✊

  10. Mr. Zero TV says:

    Hello 1990s!!

    FOX, heal thyself.