Warning: This article contains spoilers for “Review.”
In order to keep people interested in a show between seasons, a big cliffhanger to cap off a season finale usually helps.
However, cliffhangers can also pose creative challenges. The following season has the responsibility of resolving whatever conflict the last one ended on. As a result, this may create a time gap or lead to a complete shift in tone of the show.
This is exactly the challenge Comedy Central’s “Review” had to deal with in the shift from season one to season two.
In “Review,” Forrest MacNeil (Andy Daly) plays a critic who has a television show where he reviews life experiences. The toll of the first season left Daly’s character Forrest divorced, homeless, and addicted to cocaine. In the season one finale, Forrest tells off his producer Grant (James Urbaniak), punches him in the face, and then runs away. This leaves his assistant on the show A.J. Gibbs (Megan Stevenson) alone and confused.
This left multiple possibilities for the show.
It could have reinvented itself and somehow gone on without Forrest. However, Daly, who is also the show’s creator, told Tech Insider this would have been challenging for the show’s very strict format.
“Well, one very important thing to us is the idea that the show you’re watching is Forrest’s show. It starts with the opening credits of Forrest’s show, and at no times are there ever peers behind the curtain that are not in the context of Forrest’s exploration of the topic.” Daly told Tech Insider in an interview.
In other words, you never see anything on “Review” that isn’t a part of Forrest MacNeil’s actual review.
In the long gap between seasons, “Review” turned the missing host into a viral marketing campaign, with several videos asking for help to find Forrest, all capped off with the hashtag #FindForrest.
So instead of starting season two right where season one left off, “Review” did something that likely no other show has ever done: It used the internet resolved its cliffhanger before the next season even started.
Daly and the “Review” crew filmed a four minute clip that both resolved the first season mystery and set up the season to come:
This video, which was released by Comedy Central on July 1, shows a press conference held by Grant in which he claims to have found Forrest. Forrest then comes to the podium and promises to never abandon his job again.
Daly was just eager to getting back to what worked so well in season one, and YouTube, which benefits the show in many ways, allowed for him to do just that.
“We could have started with, you know, AJ Gibbs’ review to which Forrest injects himself at some point. We thought about doing that. We debated every possible way of doing it. But it kind of felt like, ‘Let’s just dispense with exposition about how we got here as quickly as possible and just dive immediately as fast as possible back into what the show is. It’s been gone for so long, let’s just get right back into it. That also ended up feeling like the best and rightest thing to do.” Daly said.
You can watch season two of “Review” every Thursday on Comedy Central at 10:00 P.M.
NOW WATCH: The trailer for season two of Comedy Central’s hilarious ‘Review’ goes to insane new heights
NOW WATCH: Briefing videos
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.