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TV Review: NBC’s ‘Mr. Robinson’

In Mr. Robinson, the comedy debuting on NBC Wednesday at 9 p.m., The Office‘s Craig Robinson stars as a struggling musician who also substitute teaches. The following are reviews from TV critics around the web, compiled by B&C.

“Incompetence, of course, can be funny, but only if served with some originality. Nothing about Mr. Robinson is fresh or imaginative. Even Mr. Robinson, who has said the show is based on his life, looks bored.”
Neil Genzlinger, The New York Times

“NBC sent out all six episodes of Mr. Robinson, which is puzzling, because it’s one of those shows that can be assessed after roughly 10 minutes. [...] The resulting sitcom doesn’t live up (or down) to either half of the band’s name, and seems destined to test how fast people can operate the remote after America’s Got Talent.”
Brian Lowry, Variety

“NBC’s new Mr. Robinson may be about the saddest show I’ve seen all summer. The sitcom, starring Craig Robinson (The Office), is so earnest and tries so hard that I feel guilty having to say it’s really not very funny, original or interesting.”
David Wiegand, San Francisco Chronicle

“There’s rarely a sense that anyone is doing anything other than marking time on the way to the next gig, which hopefully, for Robinson, won’t be Hot Tub Time Machine 3.”
Keith Uhlich, The Hollywood Reporter

“The few worthwhile themes are subverted by absurd, borderline-racist characterizations and ribald pop-culture-referencing dialogue that tries way too hard. Here’s to you, Mr. Robinson: You deserve better.”
Jeff Jensen, Entertainment Weekly

“Craig Robinson is long overdue for a dedicated star vehicle. Unfortunately, Mr. Robinson wastes him almost completely. From its title to the fact that each episode allows Robinson to play one or more of his signature silly-sexy R&B songs, the show is clearly designed as a showcase for the multitalented performer—even as it undermines his comedic strengths at every turn.”
Dennis Perkins, A.V. Club

“This is one of those shows with some promise in some of the characters — and even potential chuckles at the better, weirder jokes — but so clearly emits the sad stench of yet another comedy that that’s been cooked too long in a network oven.”
Hank Stuever, Washington Post

“Craig Robinson is a talented musician who once starred in a classic series and has now wandered into a bad sitcom. The worse news -- his name is on it.”
Verne GayNewsday