‘Ground Floor’: Premiere Review
Last night, TBS’s Ground Floor debuted with two back to back episodes. While I wasn’t expecting much from the show, it is the best show I have seen this season. Ground Floor is pretty much a brotastic version of Just Shoot Me!, which sounds terrible, but actually ends up being better than latter.
Ground Floor stars Skylar Astin as Brody Moyer. Brody works for a money managing company owned by Remington Stewart Mansfield, who John C. McGinley plays masterfully. Remington feels that Brody is like the son he never had. He is grooming Brody to take over the company and wants Brody to focus solely on work. However, Brody met a girl, who works on the ground floor.
The pilot episode revolves around the tension between the top floor and the bottom floor. The top floor looks down on the bottom floor because a lot of those employees barely finished high school and will never move up in their careers. The bottom floor believes that the top floor is full of soulless people, who never have any fun.
Honestly, the top floor’s assessment of the bottom floor is pretty accurate for the most part. Other than Jenny Miller, who is Brody’s love interest, the rest of the bottom floor employees are not very bright. Mark “Harvard” Shrake and Derrick Dupree have office chair races on a daily basis, while Tori goes clubbing at night and uses work to catch up on her sleep.
The bottom floor’s perception of the top floor isn’t that close to reality. The top floor isn’t soulless. Remington comes of as a cocky bastard, but that’s only because his job calls for it. Throughout conversations with Brody, Remington shows he cares. The only reason he’s so tough on Brody now is because Remington wants Brody to have everything he wants when he has a family. Remington revealed that he busted his ass until he was 40, so that he could be filthy rich, see his wife all the time, and never miss his daughter’s volleyball games. He tells Brody to watch out when it comes to a relationship with Jenny because the employees on the bottom floor will be 40 and not able to afford rent.
Once you realize Remington’s high opinion of himself is probably a facade he puts on to motivate his employees, the man becomes quite likeable. Granted, saying that you built a company on the blood of your ancestors is harsh, but it’s the only way Remington’s employees on the top floor take him seriously. The top floor’s employees waste just as much time as the bottom floor. The difference is that think they are entitled to a high paying job because they went to Ivy League schools.
The second episode, “Off to the Races,” built upon the themes of the pilot. Jenny and Brody continue hooking up after work, but try to break up because they think it will never work. However, Brody decides their relationship is worth the risk and goes behind Remington’s back, which Remington respects more than had Brody listened to him. Harvard also makes another trip to the top floor. In the pilot, he pretended to be a new co-worker, whereas in the second episode Harvard steals Remington’s chair and almost gets fired for it. The only reason he doesn’t is because Brody convinces Remington that Harvard did it for Remington’s benefit and that he needs a standing desk. Remington doesn’t buy it, but goes along with it because he likes Brody.
In “Off to the Races,” Remington meets Jenny for the first time. He kept telling Brody he doesn’t want to meet Jenny, but ends up running into her while waiting for the elevator. Remington ends up admitting Jenny’s charming, smart, and he understands completely why Brody loves her, which is exactly why he didn’t want to meet her. In Remington’s mind, work and relationships are mutually exclusive for young employees with high ambitions, so Remington feels that it will be that much harder from him to destroy their relationship. It’s odd because you would think that a happy employee would benefit Remington and his company, but Brody spends a little too much time thinking about Jenny at work and ends up failing a couple of Remington’s tests.
Ground Floor should have been green-lit for NBC and aired as part of their Thursday lineup. The show targets the same audience as Community and Parks and Recreation, yet is a throwback to the Must See TV days of the 90s. At times, Ground Floor feels like Friends, if the show had taken place at a money management firm, instead of a coffee shop. Hopefully, people will realize that Ground Floor is worth watching. It’s more than a third rate sitcom on that network with a bunch of reruns and Conan.
Posted on November 15, 2013, in Comedy, Primetime, Sitcoms, TBS and tagged brody moyer, derrick dupree, ground floor, jenny miller, john c. mcginley, mark "harvard" shrake, remington stewart mansfield, skylar astin, tbs. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.