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The Great Indoors


Jack has led a thrilling "outdoorsy" life exploring the edges of the earth while chronicling his adventures for Outdoor Limits. But his globe-trotting days end when the magazine's charismatic founder and outdoor legend, Roland, announces the publication's move to web-only and assigns Jack to supervise their online team of "journalists." Jack's eager 20-something colleagues include Clark, a tech nerd who knows everything about surviving on Mars and a zombie apocalypse; Emma, their social media expert who views Jack as the human version of dial-up; and Mason, a hipster-lumberjack who hasn't spent any actual time outside. Jack reports to Roland's daughter, Brooke, an ex-flame who caters to the sensitive staffers by giving them all trophies just for working hard. Jack's best friend, Eddie, runs the local dive bar that's popular with the younger set and helps Jack "decode" his co-workers. Jack is baffled by the world of click-bait and listicles, but if he's patient, he may be able to show these kids that the outside world is much more than something on a screen…if he doesn't beat them with their selfie-sticks first.

Status: Running
TV Channel: CBS
  • Mark A. Perigard

    McHale, as he proved on “Community,” has great timing, and he’s aided by his office colleagues, especially the delightfully deadpan Ko and Fry, who combines sweet and weird. With its office-as-asylum atmosphere, Great Indoors echoes “NewsRadio,” not a bad influence.

    Boston Herald Full Review
  • David Wiegand

    The series, created by Mike Gibbons, really is funny, which is the important part. But it’s also very smart, given the generally older demographic for broadcast TV. ... The cast is great, especially Fry, but Fielding doesn’t quite have the right chemistry with McHale to be the potential frenemy love interest. She doesn’t seem quite formidable enough in the role.

    San Francisco Chronicle Full Review
  • Hank Stuever

    It all rings just true enough to be fairly funny; the pilot episode comes across as a way to poke harmless fun across the divide [between millennials and Generation X].

    Washington Post Full Review
  • Neil Genzlinger

    Jack is no Jeff, and this series, an old-school set-up-punch-line comedy, is no “Community.” That said, there are plenty of good laughs, and the show is an equal-opportunity roaster.

    The New York Times Full Review
  • Robert Lloyd

    Neither [Man With a Plan or The Great Indoors] is groundbreaking or particularly exciting; both are quite likable and solidly constructed.

    Los Angeles Times Full Review
  • Erik Adams

    When its cast is interacting as characters, and not boogeymen born on the op-ed page, The Great Indoors is worth subscribing to.

    The A.V. Club Full Review
  • Gail Pennington

    The Great Indoors would benefit from better writing, of course.

    St. Louis Post-Dispatch Full Review
  • Tom Long

    The pilot is a bit clunky setting all this up (there’s also Jack’s local bartender and friend, Eddie, played by Chris Williams), but the actors are all pretty sharp, as are the cross-generational jokes.

    The Detroit News Full Review
  • Glenn Garvin

    It doesn't require an overdeveloped sense of empathy to see that, for anybody under 40, the show is going to feel less like a comedic experience than the receiving end of a gang-bang. Full Review
  • Matt Webb Mitovich

    If The Great Indoors can maintain a balance of smart, and not tired, barbs lobbed between “the human version of dial-up” and the “stupid twentysomethings” with whom he must now work, there surely is a show here.

    TVLine Full Review
  • Verne Gay

    In the pilot, some of the lines even find their mark--assuming the intended mark are sites like BuzzFeed, Digg, Cracked, Reddit, Upworthy and so on. But the millennial jokes quickly grow stale, along with their “what is it with these kids” setups.

    Newsday Full Review
  • Robert Bianco

    The problem here isn’t that Great is making fun of millennials: No generation gets blanket immunity from mockery. It’s that it’s doing so in such predictable, worn out fashion.

    USA Today Full Review
  • Rob Lowman

    McHale, the “Community” veteran, is enjoyable. The jokes aren’t bad, and it’s fun having Fry as the out-of-touch editor. Based on the first episode, though, the show is hit and miss. The premise is stretched every which way, but somehow Indoors seem a bit claustrophobic.

    Los Angeles Daily News Full Review
  • Brian Lowry

    There some modest laughs wrung out of this generational clash.

    CNN Full Review
  • Scott D. Pierce

    The Great Indoors isn't a great show, but it has possibilities.

    The Salt Lake Tribune Full Review
  • Matthew Gilbert

    After his good work on “Community,” McHale is slumming with this one-joke piece of network business.

    Boston Globe Full Review
  • Matt Zoller Seitz

    A shallow and essentially flat show. ... The show's lone saving grace is Stephen Fry as Roland.

    New York Magazine (Vulture) Full Review
  • Ellen Gray

    Whether Roland's cuddling a bear cub in Thursday's pilot or joking with Jack about the best ways to drink your own urine, he [Stephen Fry], and his chemistry with McHale, are the least tired things about a show that's still finding its way in a brave-ish new world.

    Philadelphia Daily News Full Review
  • Rob Owen

    British comic actor Stephen Fry is the best part of The Great Indoors, playing the company’s top honcho but his presence alone isn’t enough to salvage this stale series. A second episode proves to be no improvement on the lackluster pilot.

    Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Full Review
  • Dan Fienberg

    McHale's gift with sarcasm makes some of the stale punchlines work and he's always willing to look like a fool as long as he simultaneously looks good doing it.

    The Hollywood Reporter Full Review
  • Amber Dowling

    While there may be some hidden truths in the intended comedy, the scenes often come across as judgemental and ill-conceived.

    The Wrap Full Review
  • Ken Tucker

    It’s aimed at millennials yet making fun of them constantly, and aimed at McHale fans while putting the star in his least-flattering light.

    Yahoo TV Full Review
  • David Sims

    This is a hilariously staid, old-school, laugh-track sitcom about a man whose only purpose is to grit his teeth and gripe about young people. It’d be funny, if it weren’t so, well, unfunny--hokey stereotypes just don’t make for compelling comedy.

    The Atlantic Full Review
  • Mitchel Broussard

    It’s a lack of humor that’s only more unbelievable the further you delve into it, and the more you realize no quality talent can make up for a lack of quality jokes.

    We Got This Covered Full Review
  • Allison Keene

    The problem is that the show and its humor are relics of an increasingly unsuccessful formula for TV comedy.

    Collider Full Review
  • Sonia Saraiya

    The sitcom could have a little bit of melancholic sweetness to it, but The Great Indoors instead takes it upon itself to issue value judgments on an entire generation of people, and the result is perplexing and off-putting. It makes for a rather uncomfortable half-hour, where the audience is asked to identify with an undermining, insulting protagonist.

    Variety Full Review
  • Ed Bark

    Jack technically is a Gen Xer. But he might as well be the Quaker Oats man in the eyes of millennials getting the same broad brush treatment. It’s a wonder they can even feed themselves in a comedy that force-feeds its concept and swallows McHale whole in the process.

    Uncle Barky Full Review
Episode Guide For Show: The Great Indoors