February 26, 2004
S-I-T-C-O-M Men

Method Man and Redman: The New Face of FOX?

The mainstreaming of Method Man and Redman continues with the announcement that the rappers will star in a new sitcom for FOX. (Fox Parties with Boyz N' the Gated Hood, Hollywood Reporter, Cynthia Littleton and Nellie Andreeva).

Setting aside for the moment the awful, dated headline, here's the story of the show's premise:

The untitled Method Man/Redman project, now in production in New Jersey, is one of the heat-seekers on Fox's comedy development slate this year... The project, described as a kind of edgier take on "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air" theme, was the brainchild of Method Man, the Wu-Tang Clan member who figured that his idea for a TV series couldn't be any worse than a lot of the stuff he has seen in primetime in recent years.

I'll withhold my judgment until I see it, mostly because Method Man is so fucking awesome. I still listen to Tical all the time and whenever I hear Meph's growling, blunt-smoking frogman voice on a Wu-Tang album or side project (his verse on Raekwon's "Ice Cream" is a classic), I marvel at just what an amazing MC he is.

Redman's pretty great, too: Dare Iz A Darkside is the rare CD that holds up ten years after its release. And Redman's sense of humor is evident in some of his more playful rhymes.

I've never seen How High, but I know from their videos and their short-lived Right Guard commercials that Method Man and Redman have great comic chemistry. (Maybe not the best taste in material, as a series of deodorant commercials suggests, but hey, they've got kids and college is expensive.)

It's also interesting to see how the mainstream uses—and is used—by edgy rappers. Snoop Dogg set the template for transforming a frightening rap persona into a cuddly pose. (Even your mom says "Fo' Shizzle" nowadays.) Ice Cube is following suit with Barbershop and Barbershop 2: Back in Business. By this time next year, Method Man and Redman may be trading small talk with Regis and Kelly: time will only tell.

It'll be interesting to see how this show is positioned by FOX. Can they make it into another Bernie Mac Show or will they drop the ball like they did with Cedric the Entertainer?

[via TV Tattle]

Posted in a Shallow fashion.

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