Posted on June 18, 2020
TL;DR: An often very funny yet puzzling comedy from the guys who brought you The Office stumbled out of the gate with some oddly bad judgment, but have 80% recovered as the series progresses.
Spoilers for SPACE FORCE follow.
A lot of people bailed on Space Force during the first episode and I have to say that even though I continued on with the show I spent some time scratching my head about some decisions they made that seemed designed to alienate their target audience.
So let’s talk about the target audience before we get to that big trip up the creators should have plainly seen well in advance of approving the first script.
Though they never mention the President or First Lady by name, this is obviously a show satirizing the man currently in the Oval Office. You know, the one who created Space Force but didn’t bother to trademark the name.
It’s obvious from their treatment of POTUS and FLOTUS that this show is targeted at the left side of the political spectrum because the right side simply cannot accept any kind of implied criticism of their man, including even the gentle fun poked at him in this show.
However, having clearly established this is a show for the The Left (or as it’s called in France “La Left”) the very first thing they did was to make fun of Progressive darling AOC in a tone deaf, uncalled for, and clearly baseless way.
Now making fun of AOC is not a problem. They also make fun of Nancy Pelosi and a string of other barely disguised Congresspeople. The problem is, when you caricature someone, you exaggerate their actual traits.
Let’s say you’re lampooning a craven, cowardly, corrupt President. How do you do that? You make him more craven, more cowardly, more corrupt. What you don’t do is take one of the smartest, hardest working people in Congress and make her out to be stupid.
It was a pointless self-inflicted wound and I have stopped counting the number of people how marked that moment as when they hit the big red button and ejected from the show.
I’m not sure what they hoped to accomplish with their portrayal of AOC — maybe they don’t like progressives? — but there were a dozen ways to characterize her that wouldn’t have seemed like an effort to take down a smart, aggressive woman.
Other than that, the show is often very funny. It’s well cast and mostly well written. It’s too bad they cut off their nose to spite their face in episode 1.