David Wain (pictured right) is one of the oddball comedy minds behind Wet Hot American Summer and the romantic comedy parody They Came Together. Along with his frequent collaborators, Michael Showalter and Michael Ian Black, he’s been responsible for some genius and weird comedy that often plays with the format of stand-up comedy, film and television in a very meta way. And he’s about to try something that narrative comedy has never attempted before.
WarnerMedia has ordered a pilot for a new comedy series from Jax Media called Today’s Special, created by David Wain and A.D. Miles, head writer for The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon and supporting star in many of Wain’s projects. But this isn’t your average pilot order. Instead, it includes an initial order for four episodes because the series is intended to be shot and aired daily, not unlike soap operas and late night talk shows. Just the premise for the show sounds like something worth checking out.
The Today’s Special comedy series, announced by Deadline, is described as having the storytelling mechanics of a daily soap opera mixed with the tone and style of a single camera sitcom. As for the story, it follows the lives of the staff and regular patrons at a 24-hour diner (so the title has layers). And since it’s shot and aired daily, it will have topical jokes, references and storylines inspired by a given week’s trending topics and events.
There has never been a show quite like this before. Saturday Night Live comes close with its topical sketch comedy created within the span of a week. And South Park‘s similarly structured weekly production schedule does the same thing, but in a much more wacky fashion. But a sitcom-style show aired and shot daily is rather innovative on the comedy scene.
As of now, WarnerMedia has ordered the series, but they’re not sure exactly where it’ll end up. The concept is experimental enough that it should probably go somewhere like HBO Max. But I could also see them sending it somewhere like TBS or even TruTV, where a lot of outside the box comedy ideas have flourished in recent years. The daily format could make it a difficult show to latch onto, especially in this ongoing period of Peak TV with endless amounts of entertainment, but Wain has a loyal following of fans, so hopefully it can find an audience long enough for the show to at least find its footing.
Stay tuned as this project develops, and we’ll keep you posted.
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