Sunnyside Episode 1
Welcome to Sunnyside!
This Fall, NBC is bringing audiences to Sunnyside on Thursdays. Kal Penn stars in this comedy as former City Councilman, Garrett Modi. After a video goes viral of a drunk Garrett vomiting on a police car and bribing a police officer while he was pulled over, Garrett is removed from his Councilman position. Diana Barea (Ana Villafane) replaces him and takes over his office, which he was living in since he blew all of his money. Garrett goes to live with his sister (Kiran Deol), because it is less pathetic then living with his parents.
He has a plan to get back on his feet again: Lie low, get a job and get reelected. While looking for a job, he types a Google search for his name. He finds the video that went viral alongside advertisements. He decides to take out a personal ad to spend the day with the “BQE puker” as he calls himself. Several people accept the offer and pay him fifty dollars an hour to take pictures and recreate the scene with him. One response to the ad is from a group of people looking to get their citizenship.
Meet the Crew
Brady (Moses Storm): A millennial who is from Moldova, but has been in America since he was two.
Griselda (Diana Maria Riva): A Dominican, who has several different jobs.
Hakim (Samba Schutte): From Ethiopia where he was a thoracic surgeon, but in America he is a cab driver.
Mei Lin (Poopy Liu) and Jung Ho (Joel Kim Booster): Asian siblings with very wealthy parents.
This group was taking classes, but the class was shut down and now they can’t get into another one since all of them are full. They thought that since Garrett was a councilman, he may have some connections to help them get their citizenship. Garrett agrees to help, but none of his colleagues will take his calls. He calls his sister and pretends she is a politician, to give the group some hope and also to get paid.
Garrett’s Teaching Skills
Since he doesn’t know much about becoming a citizen, Garrett takes the group to a baseball game. He tries to inspire them with a speech about all the players being from different nationalities, but this group would just prefer to study what will be on the test.
When one of their friends is taken into custody and about to be deported, they ask Garrett to call his politician friend to help, since their friend had a green card and was here legally. Busted! Garrett comes clean about not getting in touch with any political figure. They realize that he doesn’t have any connections and no longer want his help.
Garrett finds Hakim and asks him to get the group back together. They go to visit Diana, and Garrett explains that they are trying to get their citizenship and find their friend. Diana agrees to help them because unlike Garrett who always talked a great deal but never did anything, she wants to be the type of councilman that gets things done.
Garrett is back to tutoring the group again, this time at his sister’s apartment.
It almost seems as though this show is trying hard to be funny. Whenever the cast is trying to hit those funny one-liners, it doesn’t seem to flow. There were some genuinely funny moments, when Bill Nye is trying to teach the siblings about the Electoral College and seeing Griselda in yet another one of her many jobs, but it mostly felt forced.
I hope that since this was the pilot episode, the cast just needs time to gel and play off each other better. I think after a couple episodes, the show may get better. The idea of a disgraced politician finding redemption in helping people, is a great concept and I really would like to see this show succeed.
Stay connected with So Many Shows: