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‘Abbott Elementary’ Is The Must-Watch Comedy Of 2022 – Review

Believe the hype about Abbott Elementary!

Creating successful TV shows during these times can be rather difficult, especially for comedies. Not only does the writing have to be strong, but you need compelling characters to actually make the material work. After watching the first two episodes of Abbott Elementary, I can confidently say this show has all the right tools to stand amongst any other sitcom comedies currently on TV.

Abbott Elementary - Cast
Tyler James Williams as Gregory Eddie, Chris Perfetti as Jacob Hill, Quinta Brunson as Janine Teagues, Sheryl Lee Ralph as Barbara Howard and Lisa Ann Walter as Melissa Schemmenti in Abbott Elementary. (Courtesy of ABC/Prashant Gupta)

Quinta Brunson stars as Janine Teagues, a second-grade teacher at the school. Not only is Brunson the star of Abbott Elementary, but is also the show’s creator and executive producer. In this workplace comedy, a group of dedicated, passionate teachers — and a slightly thoughtless principal — are brought together in a Philadelphia public school where, despite the odds stacked against them, they are determined to help their students succeed in life. After viewing the first episode, I felt like I already understood all of the motivations by each main character very clearly.

I’m a big fan of Parks and Recreation and The Office, and this show has the same mockumentary type feel to it. Although the mockumentary style isn’t anything new, the cast really helps make the series feel fresh. However, instead of a paper company or a government facility, we are placed right in the middle of a school. As someone who went to a public school for elementary, middle and high school, I was able to relate to it in a few ways. Instead of a Michael Scott or Leslie Knope type, audiences have Brunson as Janine who is an optimistic yet sarcastic and witty character trying to do right by her kids.

As mentioned earlier, the cast is probably the most essential part of making the comedy series work. Alongside Brunson is Tyler James Williams, who is no stranger to comedies. He plays Gregory Eddie, a substitute teacher with heart of gold. It is teased early on that there is a ‘will they/won’t they’ type of chemistry between Gregory and Janine. With Janine currently in an unhappy relationship, it’s fair to say that this current chemistry is something that may flourish into something more. That being said, surely we will have to wait and see how their relationship progresses as the season goes on.

Quinta Brunson as Janine Teagues, Lisa Ann Walter as Melissa Schemmenti and Sheryl Lee Ralph as Barbara Howard in Abbott Elementary. (Courtesy of ABC)

Other cast members include Ava Coleman (Janelle James) as the principal who is almost like the show’s main antagonist, but she does so in a hilarious way. Janine has a few teachers she leans on like Jacob Hill (Chris Perfetti), Melissa Schemmenti (Lisa Ann Walter) and Barbara Howard (the legendary Sheryl Lee Ralph). Because all three teachers have different views on how to teach, it offers some playful banter between them that has some meaningful and enduring lessons woven in. 

Brunson’s previous credentials with A Black Lady Sketch Show, Buzzfeed, and even her own social media channels, has allowed her to really flex her comedic chops while creating a compelling story that’s extremely easy to get invested in. Thanks to that and the addition of its plot and setting, I can see Abbott Elementary being successful for many seasons.

Abbott Elementary has all the tools it needs to be a top-tier comedy. As someone who has been following Brunson’s career for a while, it is truly an honor getting to see her magic on national television. If you haven’t watched the new show yet, please do yourself a favor and stream it now.

 Abbott Elementary airs Tuesdays at 9pm on ABC, with episodes available to stream on Hulu the following day.

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