‘The Mayor’ Creator Comes From Politics

Jeremy Bronson, creator of ABC comedy The Mayor, offers one of the more diverse backgrounds among executive producer types. Bronson came from TV news, working on The Chris Matthews Show and then Matthews’ Hardball on MSNBC before shifting to entertainment.

Bronson actually did entertainment stuff before that, working on the Harvard Lampoon in college. While at Harvard, he had a class with Lamar Alexander, who departed Harvard to run for senator. Bronson followed Alexander to Tennessee, working on his campaign. (Alexander is now a U.S. senator representing Tennessee.)

After that was his stint on Chris Matthews, where Bronson worked for three years, then Hardball for two and a half more. 

All the while, Bronson missed writing jokes. “I’ve always been doing comedy,” he said during TCA. “I missed writing comedy and starting writing packets.”

After the TV news gigs, he moved to Los Angeles to work on David Allan Grier’s Chocolate News on Comedy Central, then became head monologue writer on Jimmy Kimmel Live. Other posts followed at scripted shows, including The Mindy Project and Speechless

Bronson is now executive producer on The Mayor, about a young rapper who runs for office to promote his hip-hop career, and wins the election. The other exec producers are Jamie Tarses and Daveed Diggs, from Broadway smash Hamilton. Larry Wilmore writes for the show. “I love the man,” says Bronson, who describes the writers room as "a really diverse group with diverse experiences." 

The Mayor premieres Oct. 3 at 9:30. The show’s premise, about an outsider who is the unlikely choice among voters, may make some think of President Trump. But Bronson said at TCA that the idea for the show came before Trump emerged as the pace-setting GOP candidate. 

He does say the feeling around the country since Trump has been elected may be good for The Mayor. “Given the politics of the past year, it’s helped,” Bronson said. “Everybody is a lot more focused on what they can do, what we can all do to improve our country, improve our situations.”

Brandon Micheal Hall plays the rapping mayor, Courtney Rose. Lea Michele, Bernard David Jones, Yvette Nicole Brown and Marcel Spears are also in the cast, while David Spade pops up too, as the incumbent mayor Rose faces off against. Daveed Diggs writes original music for The Mayor.

Bronson describes the show's thrust as, “This really socially conscious guy who is young and smart, who is thrust into this unlikely position.” Courtney Rose “looks around his community, sees these problems. He’s been rapping about them for years,” he says. 

The Los Angeles Times gave the show a positive review. It said, “The comedy features a timely premise full of playful political sendups, light social commentary and plenty of sharp, funny millennial-skewing pop-culture references.”

Michael Malone

Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.