TV Review: ‘Mixology’

Mixology ABC TV Review

'The Hangover' writers serve up a tasty comedy cocktail

Once you get past the gimmick – a bunch of singles in a bar, as played out over one wacky night – “Mixology” quickly establishes itself as an inordinately appealing comedy, blessed with quick wit and a promising array of characters. Quickly expanding beyond its potentially claustrophobic premise with deft use of flashbacks, it’s the kind of series that might not be built for the long haul, but which almost instantly emerges as disarmingly fresh and funny. ABC’s struggles to launch new sitcoms notwithstanding, “Mixology” at least serves up the main ingredient anybody could want from a half-hour comedy.

Created by Jon Lucas and Scott Moore (“The Hangover”), and improbably hailing from Ryan Seacrest’s production shingle, the whole show takes place in the same bar, as different characters seek to forge love connections — or at least, get laid. In the premiere, the focus is on Tom (Blake Lee), newly broken up from his girlfriend, who appears over his head hitting on the man-eating Maya (Ginger Gonzaga); and the awkward breakup between waitress Kacey (Vanessa Lengies) and bartender Dominic (Adan Canto), who seems fine with her decision to end things, mostly because he can’t remember her name anyway.

Along the way, other characters migrate in and out, such as narrator/dating Yoda Bruce (Andrew Santino), who dispenses bar-etiquette wisdom like, “The higher the heels, the looser she feels.” Or there’s Jessica (Alexis Carra), a single mom a few years older than most of the patrons, who walks in and deadpans, “I feel like Helen Mirren.”

Although the central conceit might appear confining — and not exactly built for a 100-episode run — it’s pretty clear from the outset that “Mixology” has the characters’ entire lives and romantic histories upon which to draw, while veering into pop-culture references like debating the merits of “Sex and the City” or (in the second episode) dissing the entire CBS comedy lineup.

Of course, maintaining this sort of rat-a-rat patter is no small feat, but the series gets off to such a promising start as to bode well for future installments. Moreover, the shifting pairings from episode to episode create a semi-serialized element that deftly builds off the groundwork laid the previous week, conjuring questions about who’s going to wind up with whom.

 Although the setting feels slightly askew of its “Modern Family” lead-in, this is easily one of the best sitcoms ABC has given the benefit of that plum launching pad.

At times, ABC has been guilty of being too precious in its reliance on single-camera comedies, particularly those that win a small cadre of media admirers but feel too narrow. Whether this show turns into a longterm relationship or just the makings of a prolonged one-night stand, based on first, second and third impressions, it’s quite easy to develop a serious crush on “Mixology.”

TV Review: 'Mixology'

(Series; ABC, Wed. Feb. 26, 9:30 p.m.)


Filmed in Los Angeles by Ryan Seacrest Prods. in association with ABC Studios.


Executive producers, Jon Lucas, Scott Moore, Nina Wass, Ira Ungerleider, Ryan Seacrest, Adam Sher; writers, Lucas, Moore; producer, Bari Halle Cannon; director, Larry Charles; writers, Lucas, Moore; camera, Michael Mayers; production designer, Jerry Fleming; editor, Jonathan Schwartz; music, Adam Gibbons, Mikael Sandgren; music supervisor, Gabe Hilfer; casting, Wendy O’Brien, Melissa DeLizia. 30 MIN.


Adam Campbell, Adan Canto, Alexis Carra, Craig Frank, Ginger Gonzaga, Blake Lee, Vanessa Lengies, Andrew Santino, Frankie Shaw, Kate Simses

Filed Under:

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 6

Leave a Reply


Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

  1. Mahima says:

    Refreshing read after pages and pages of so severely judgmental and critical reviews by the “politically correct”. Show’s pretty smart, characters’ got potential, I say give it a chance and let loose a little.

  2. Stacey says:

    It’s really disturbing that Variety would have a reviewer that looks at misogynistic comments, jokes about rape and an overall disgusting depiction of how men should talk about and view women as funny. I’m appalled by the show AND this review. Completely offensive.

  3. tgo says:

    Absolutely horrendous. I changed it shortly after the joke where the female character disses a passive male co-worker by saying something about how a real man wouldn’t let her get away with her comment…he’d slap her in the face and…etc. Quite enough for me, thanks. Read some other quotes from the episode in reviews, and even out of context, stupid and sad for a TV comedy. And why is this Variety reviewer so generous to give it a chance, even when he acknowledge it’s gimmicky and not necessarily there for the long haul? These aren’t newbie writers or producers, so why cut them slack if the work is poor? Praise mediocrity and you’ll keep getting more of it.

  4. says:

    Obviously, this show is misogynistic. Condoning rape, ABC? Classy.

  5. Super funny! Looking forward to future episodes! Remembering my younger days frequenting clubs, the show has gotten it right!

  6. Paul L. says:

    Funnier than expected — far more hits than misses…worth following for the next few weeks.

More TV News from Variety