Review Of Ted

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Comedy underwent a sea change over the last 12 years since Ted was first shown in theaters. Besides the changing culture and sensibilities, the genre that was once dominant at the box office has taken a nosedive with only some A lister projects managing to make it to screen every year. Thus, it is not surprising how Peacock would pick up a prequel for one of the biggest comedy hits of all time considering that it features such big names as Adam Sandler, Melissa McCarthy and Kevin Hart who have switched to streaming. However this can be the only proof of Ted’s adaptability. This buddy comedy which takes place while John Bennett (Max Burkholder taking over from Mark Wahlberg) is still in school and his toy best friend (voiced by Seth MacFarlane) is extremely derivative: Yes, the cute bear still swears.

An early clue comes from the slick opening theme similar to Family Guy: Ted presents itself as an expertly made live-action version of some of MacFarlane’s other popular animated sitcoms with just slightly different cast members. While Burkholder does an amazing job at impersonating Wahlberg’s excessive-performance (together with his Southie accent) in Ted as well as Ted 2, others are equally annoying/funny depending on how much you can withstand them. For some reason, John’s parents are now called Matty (Scott Grimes) and Susan (Alanna Ubach), while most episodes revolve around their differences. Add a random cousin (Giorgia Whigham) into this new season of Family Guy-like show named Ted and things are off to just about average start.

Patrick Stewart did not transition from film to television: bad news for fans. The role of Apache-helicopter-obsessed narrator has thankfully shifted from Star Trek legend Patrick Stewart to his friend Iain McKellen famous foe X-Men series. McKellen appears in only a few episodes and is generally underused – but when he does show up, he really delivers the goods.

Most of the jokes in Ted are seen and heard before which makes it tired, offensive and funny (or not). It contains outrageous humour partly derived from an old worn out joke that has a small furry bear saying some very inappropriate things. Gags include ones about Jews, cannibalism, John Belushi and even one you’ve already heard in the Paul Rudd-Seann William Scott joint Role Models. If you watched Family Guy, there’s a sense you know what to expect again, which is the main issue here.

The series gets better as it continues with its peak being reached at around mid-point. A new crazy character adds an interesting twist to this formula while Ted’s pop culture references become more pronounced with each subsequent episode. Whether or not you stick around long enough for that will depend on your affection for movies in general and MacFarlane’s other projects in particular.

There’s no cohesive story nor a proper reason why Ted seven episodes have been put together. Each episode is a standalone one- your typical sitcom that has not run for 100 episodes. It’s just too bad considering the fact that Ted would be an excellent comfort watch – something you could tune in weekly to catch up with Bennett family lives. Seven episodes are not enough time to build up the momentum for Ted and then it just falls flat on its face at the finish line before anything good even happens. Maybe season two can go a step further – it may not be very original but some laughs are something we all expect from MacFarlane.

One of the best reasons to come back for more Teddy is John and Teddy’s double whammy – their chemistry is great plus Burkholder handles Wahlberg flawlessly. Blend with lots of throwback snickers and interesting, funny links that refer to movies – this makes for an okay comedy that does not do its source material any injustice.


Ted welcomes trash-talking teddy bears back into our lives again. A new ‘90s setting allows Seth MacFarlane to take aim at our recent past in a satirical way. Unfortunately, there isn’t much else about it, and only seven installments don’t give Ted enough time to get into the same groove as those ‘90s sitcoms which it parodies quite openly. Predictably, Ted has numerous things to say about this world; unfortunately, they are hardly worth uttering a word about most of these things…

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