When Bob's Burgers debuted last spring, the show not only surprised me with how good it was, but also went on to become one of my favorite shows of 2011. I was initially curious about Bob's because I love Archer, and the two shows share a lead voice actor: H. Jon Benjamin. But once I tuned in, Bob's hooked me with its sharply written humor and characters who felt new and original. Though it flew under the radar and could easily have disappeared, Fox renewed the show for a full second season, which premieres this weekend—hooray!
Bob's Burgers follows the Belchers, a family that basically has the same structure as the titular clan of The Simpsons and the Griffins of Family Guy—mom, dad, and three kids—so it's a perfect fit for the Sundays at 8:30pm timeslot between the two. And it gives us a break from watching three Seth MacFarlane shows in a row. Still not convinced to tune in? Here are five more reasons why you should pick it up with Season 2.
H. Jon Benjamin supplies the voice of Bob, and he's just as funny here as he is on Archer, even though Bob Belcher and Sterling Archer are complete opposites. Here, he's a thoughtful, stern father who works hard to provide for his family and never talks down to his kids. But there's also John Roberts as Bob's wife Linda, who was also the voice from one of the funniest sketches on YouTube, "The Christmas Tree". It's a joy to know he got a chance to put his perfect female impersonation to work.
Bob's Burgers amassed dozens of fans in its first season, and with any luck, Season 2 will be even better. Discover it now, and then hope everybody else does, too.
The Belcher kids are among the best TV new characters to come out of 2011. First there's Louise, the loud, shit-stirring ringleader voiced by TV.com favorite Kristen Schaal; she's the the youngest but also the smartest. Then there's Tina (Dan Mintz), the eldest, whose sexual awakening and love for zombies makes for a sincerely awkward portrayal of a young girl hitting puberty. And finally there's middle-child Gene (Eugene Mirman), a budding musician and fun-loving attention-getter.
The jokes and storylines are reminiscent of early Simpsons and Family Guy episodes, when both shows were new and focused on authentic family interactions., when neither one was particularly self-aware and before Family Guy got so mean. But Bob's delivers just enough edge to keep it real without feeling treacly.
Top-notch actors have quietly voiced some of the supporting cast, like Kevin Kline as the Belchers' landlord, Mr. Fischoeder (as in fish-odor), and Jack McBrayer (30 Rock's Kenneth Parcell) as a tranny hooker.
Bob's Burgers returns for Season 2 this Sunday, March 11, at 8:30pm on Fox.