It’s a rough state of affairs when news of the Earth’s impending destruction isn’t the worst thing that happens to you in a given day, yet that’s where the members of You, Me and the Apocalypse‘s doomsday bunch are at the outset of NBC’s new comedy.
In a moment, we’ll want to know what you thought of the premiere of the series (which has already aired in the United Kingdom). But first, a brief recap:
The hour opens just as a giant asteroid is about to make impact with our planet in what the American president calls a “extinction-level event.” In a bunker buried deep in the ground, we meet Jamie (Matthew Baynton, the UK’s Gavin and Stacey), who is baffled that he wound up there with a bunch of strangers.
And just like that, a title card informs us, we’re back to 34 days before the end of the world. We find out that Jamie is a British bank manager whose wife went missing soon after their honeymoon; she’s been gone for seven years, but his anguish over her disappearance continues. The cops are watching him, and when they arrest him for hundreds of counts of robbery, it becomes clear they think he’s White Horse, the leader of a group of cyberterrorists known as Deus Ex Machina.
Jamie is not White Horse, but he sure looks like him. And when a surveillance photo proves that not only is Jamie’s wife alive (!), but she’s been palling around with his doppelganger (!!), his mother reluctantly admits that he could have a twin, because he was adopted and she doesn’t know anything about his birth family.
Meanwhile, in New Mexico, new inmate Rhonda (Jenna Fischer, The Office) tries to avoid trouble — and Leanne (Megan Mullally, Will & Grace), the swastika-tattooed white supremacist who keeps trying to befriend her — on her first day in prison. Rhonda is covering for her 14-year-old son, who hacked into both the White House and the Pentagon but didn’t steal or leak any information.
Across the ocean, young nun Sister Celine (Gaia Scodellaro) has a job interview as researcher for Father Jude, the Vatican’s devil’s advocate (Rob Lowe, Parks and Recreation); the office exists as “quality control” for canonization, he explains. After a rough interview, Celine runs from his office crying, but returns to dump a flower vase over his head and assert how good she would’ve been in the position.
Just then, news of impending doom breaks. As the world grapples with the idea that everything will end in 34 days, the core characters take action. Sister Celine agrees to help Father Jude protect the scared citizens from charlatans who’d prey on their fears. Jamie decides to search for his wife on his own. And when White Horse takes control of the New Mexico prison, Rhonda busts out — only to be picked up by Jamie’s twin, with a persistent Leanna along for the ride, as well.
Flash forward to the bunker: Many of the people we’ve met during the hour are there with Jamie. “We’re hardly the A-Team,” he notes, but they may be all that’s left of humanity when the asteroid hits.
Now it’s your turn. What did you think of the premiere? Grade the episode below, then hit the comments to expand on your thoughts!