Long before its premiere, most of the critics and the online community had already decided that "Dads" was the worst new show of the season. The Seth MacFarlane live-action series finally premiered on Fox as part of its new Tuesday night comedy block.
Based on the pilot, "Dads" has been called "offensive," "racist," "misogynistic" and just plain "reprehensible." A lot of it has to do with a scene in which Veronica (Brenda Song) is forced to dress up in a stereotypical "sexy" Chinese schoolgirl to impress a group of Chinese businessmen.
The series stars Giovanni Ribisi and Seth Green as Warner and Eli, respectively. They're life-long best friends and co-owners of a video game company. Their lives get complicated when their respective dads, played by Martin Mull and Peter Riegert, move in with them.
As expected, the dads immediately become a problem, including blowing that meeting with the potential Chinese investors. Veronica came through in the end, though, and sealed the deal. It was all thanks to a perverted text she got from one of the investors.
“That creepy translator texted me a picture of his tiny penis, so I threatened to put it online unless he convinced the investors to approve the deal.," she said excitedly. The episode ended with the group coming together to make fun of the photo.
Buzzfeed's Kate Aurthur thought the envelope-pushing content was really just lazy comedy. "The question of who is ‘allowed’ to say what, and whether misogyny or racism or homophobia can be tools of comedy, is a constant, interesting discussion where smart people can disagree," she wrote. "With its racist heart and misogynist spine, 'Dads,' despite being wan and even boring, is screaming for that kind of attention.”
Perhaps doing some early damage control, executive producer Alec Sulkin told critics that this first episode is not representative of the show as a whole -- it was their first effort. He sad, "In the pilot, we noticed some things we’d like to change or tweak moving forward ... If we missed the mark in the pilot, we're trying to hit it better in upcoming shows.”
Will viewers give the show a second chance? "Dads" continues on Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on Fox.
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