The best and worst of sitcoms starring musicians
The bad news is that Snoop Dogg is getting a sitcom, a no-doubt hackneyed affair starring the Doggfather as a patriarch with his mind on his family and his family on his mind. The even worse news is that Limp Bizkit front-penis Fred Durst is apparently getting one, too.
We feel the same way about you, Fred Durst.
The show, which CBS is currently vetting, features Durst as producer and star and follows "A rock legend looking for balance between his high-profile lifestyle and trying to raise a family." The "rock legend" and "high profile" parts are not accurate, but at least the working title is: Douchebag.
Durst may be the first of the lamentable nu-metal genre to break into sitcoms, but (as evidenced by the D-O-double-G) he's not the first musician -- many before him have dabbled in laugh tracks and 22-minute high-jinks. Here are a few of the best -- and the worst -- results.
5. Method Man and Redman: Method & Red
More an unfortunate example of stifling network oversight than of musicians not capable of acting being made to act, Method & Red could have been good. Great, even. Originally, Method Man had envisioned the proceedings, which placed him and Redman as fictionalized versions of themselves in an affluent white suburb, as sort of a 'hood styled version of Arrested Development, but that was not to be. Fox sanitized it to appeal to middle America and, without warning, added a laugh track. After a bitter dispute during which Method complained that "We can't all be the Cosbys," the show was pulled off the air with four episodes still in the can.
4. Reba McEntire: Reba
There was evidently a hole in America's heart after Grace Under Fire went off the air in 1998. Luckily, the WB was there to fill America's hole in 2001 by starring washed-up country icon Reba McEntire in basically the same show. There's nothing wrong with Reba per se, and McEntire actually does a commendable job of holding things down in the lead -- it's just that it was, you know, boring. Not that, in the world of sitcoms, that really sets it apart.
3. LL Cool J: In the House
Starring LL Cool J as a football player who, due to unfortunate financial circumstance, is forced to rent part of his spacious house out to a single mother and her two children and learn various heart-warming life lessons in the process, In the House was not a good show. In fact, it was not good enough for NBC to cancel after just two seasons. Luckily, the then-newly formed UPN was there to pick up the slack, and In the House spent another three seasons there, notably adding The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air's Carlton to the lineup during that time.
2. Brandy: Moesha
During the latter half of the '90s, UPN became more or less the standard-bearer for second-rate sitcoms starring former hip-hop and R&B icons, and of that subset, Moesha was the flagship. Really, nothing about Moesha is worth mentioning aside from that, if you remember UPN, you pretty much know the drill, here. It is, however, worth mentioning that Brandy is the first cousin of Snoop Dogg, so maybe crappy sitcoms just run in the blood.
Sisqó: Untitled, unaired pilot
Back in 2001, "Thong Song" creator Sisqó had an epiphany: "I just woke up one morning and was like, TV's sucking right now," he said. "I want to be on it." His quest to add to the suck led him to NBC, which green-lit a comedy starring Sisqó as a young and energetic TV star being mentored by veteran actor Bob Newhart playing himself -- yes, that Bob Newhart. Thinking about what a ridiculous mess this show could have been literally causes the mind to explode with pleasure/diarrhea, so it's probably a good thing that, although a pilot was reportedly filmed, this crazy-ass trainwreck never made it on the air.
Page down for our five best.