Kimmy Schmidt is back. And if you don’t enjoy Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt you likely have a disorder that prevents you from experiencing joy. The sophomore season of Tina Fey and Robert Carlock’s sublime comedy series is perhaps the most efficient joke delivery system available. That may not sound complimentary, but it is. No show on television (or internet television) is as densely packed with jokes, jokes that work with stunning consistency. A show that was sublimely goofy in its first season has only become goofier, and it pays off like gangbusters.
The central conceit of a woman trying to reintegrate into society after being held in a religious leader’s bunker of fifteen years is, perhaps, the darkest premise for a sitcom in history. But the show never reads as needlessly dark, largely due the comedy mined from the relentless positivity of its protagonist, the titular Kimmy (Ellie Kemper, a dynamo). The show’s second season is less tied to the original premise, very little time is spent on flashbacks to Kimmy’s time in the bunker, which allows the focus to shift more toward the supporting characters who are, across the boards, divine. Some of the season’s best material is derived from Jacqueline’s (Jane Krakowski) adjustment to divorced life with “only” $12 million in the bank, and a new rival in Deirdre Robespierre (Anna Camp). Also given room to grow and enjoy a fully fleshed romantic plot is Titus Andromedon (Titus Buress), becoming, perhaps, the most delightfully weird romantic hero in the history of sitcoms.
As impossible as it may seem, this season of Kimmy Schmidt is even less tethered to reality than the first, allowing Fey, Carlock and the rest of the writers to make whatever jokes they care to make freely, without breaking from the comic tone of the show. The New York of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt is half magical kingdom of endless possibilities, half disgusting hellhole, and all glorious. Anyone who misses 30 Rock (which should be everybody) and passes over Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt is a fool.
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (Season 2). Netflix
Format: Half-hour comedy.
Created By: Tina Fey, Robert Carlock
Starring: Ellie Kemper, Titus Burgess, Jane Krakowski, Carol Kane
Frank Anderson is the head movie writer at The Renaissance Fan.