Is “Back in the Game” in the Game?

I’m going to be honest. Back In the Game is not a show I’ll be watching week after week. That doesn’t mean it’s a bad show. I’m just not one of those baseball dads or soccer moms who turned the show on and said “this is my life.”

Back in the Game focuses on the relationship between Terry Gannon, her son, Danny, and her dad, The Cannon. The three of them live under one roof because Terry had to move back home after her divorce. Terry, played by Maggie Lawson, isn’t happy about the arrangement because The Cannon always calls Danny “Donny” and pushes baseball on him., which is a problem because not only is Danny not very athletic, he’s only interested in the game to get a particular girl.

Things are complicated when Danny’s tryout is so bad he doesn’t make the team. The coach, Dick, holds a meeting for parents of all the rejected kids. It becomes clear that Dick rejected all the outcasts. The foreign looking kid. The flamboyant stereotype of gay men. The fat kids. All don’t make Dick’s team.

Terry gets fed up with Dick’s crap, so she says she’ll coach all the kids Dick rejected. Of course, Dick thinks she’s terrible at baseball because she’s a girl. Little did he know, she actually played softball longer than he played baseball. He definitely regretted taking Terry’s challenge, which was to hit the one ball she throws. If he hit it, she would disappear. If he missed, she would coach the misfits. Instead of playing fair, Terry just hits him in the eye. He deserved it. The writers probably named the coach Dick just so characters can angrily call him “dick” without raising the censors’ eyebrows.

Terry’s son, Danny, is more audacious than his mother. When a boy started beating him up, Danny grabbed the boy and kissed him to through him off his game. It worked. Danny also says this like “this smells like a tin of monkey ass” in front of his mother. At first it’s a little disconcerting because no one stops him, but Danny’s gone through a lot in his life and is older than his years, so after a while you get used to it.

Then, there’s The Cannon (James Caan), who has a funny way of showing his love. He never showed up to any of Terry’s softball games, yet he has a closet full of them on tape. Terry never knew about them, so all those years she thought he didn’t care. The Cannon supports Danny’s desire to play baseball, yet can’t remember his name and insults Danny’s teammates. While The Cannon thinks it’s tough love, Terry is torn between believing her father loves her and feeling like his servant.

There are people who will immediately connect with Back in the Game. Those with a family dynamic similar to The Gannons’ will appreciate this show. Everyone else will be turned off by the obsession with little league baseball, which is a way of life for these people, and the fact that the show is as sitcom that’s not very funny and way too sentimental.

About Allison Lips

I am the Toastmasters District 83 Public Relations manager and President of Freehold Phrasers.

Posted on September 26, 2013, in ABC, Network Television, Primetime, Sitcoms and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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