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September 23, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

The premise may do more to impact the ratings of NBC’s season opener of Outsourced — a young American is sent to manage an outsourced call-center in India — than the content, which most critics agree is funny — in some scenes, outrageously so. “But whether intercultural relations can generate enough hilarity to sustain an entire show is another question,” Tripti Lahiri writes in the Wall Street Journal. Nevertheless, Erik Pedersen concludes his review in the Hollywood Reporter by remarking that it’s “hard to believe that the network took the chance on it; the public should do the same.” Robert Bianco in USA Today puts his finger on the difficulty NBC faces when he writes that the sitcom will likely face tough sledding “in a country touchy about race, rattled by unemployment and infuriated by overseas job flight.” That’s not the real problem, argues Hank Stuever in the Washington Post. The real problem is that the show is so intent on avoiding offense that it becomes merely “dopey and simple.” Likewise, David Hinckley concludes in the New York Daily News: “The question may be whether, in carefully omitting most things that could offend, the show has enough left to endure.” On the other hand, Robert Lloyd writes in the Los Angeles Times, “You walk a fine, slippery line when you contrive to build a comedy around People Who Talk Funny and lampoon, from a superpower’s perspective, a foreign culture. But Outsourced seems to me the most deftly realized sitcom of the new season. … It has a top-flight cast, characters who show you who they are rather than telling you, smart writing, sure rhythms and a cheerful attitude.”