What Is ‘The Crazy Ones?’

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What is “The Crazy Ones?” “The Crazy Ones” is a new fall 2013 TV show set to premiere on CBS on Sept. 26. The workplace comedy stars Robin Williams and Sarah Michelle Gellar. Williams, taking on his first regular TV role since starring on “Mork & Mindy,” plays Simon Roberts, “a renowned advertising genius” whose strange yet effective ways of working have made him head of a powerful Chicago agency. The eccentricities that CBS hopes will make Robin Williams’ character lovable put him at odds with his daughter, Sydney Roberts (Gellar), a more straitlaced ad exec who’s out to make her own name in the business.

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As the question “What is ‘The Crazy Ones?’” to writer Matt Webb Mitovich, who penned a fall 2013 TV preview for TVLine.com, and he’ll say it’s a show whose pilot was “steadily amusing and delivered a couple of belly laughs.” “The Crazy Ones” is written by David E. Kelly, known for his work on “Boston Legal,” and in addition to the star power of Robin Williams and Sarah Michelle Gellar—familiar to millions as the star as “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”—the CBS comedy gets a boost in its first episode from guest star Kelly Clarkson. The “American Idol” star is enlisted to single the jingle “You Deserve a Break” for McDonalds, the client Robin Williams and Sarah Michelle Gellar must scramble to make happy.

What is “The Crazy Ones?” A show with “great promise,” Mitovich says, though he has his reservations. “I mean, what will the show look like when spinning a story about a smaller, less familiar client that doesn’t serve billions and billions? And when left to the core cast’s own devices without an extremely gung-ho (and, it must but noted, quite funny) guest star to bounce off of? What about when there’s a B-story to follow?” he writes. For the answer to “What is ‘The Crazy Ones’” to be “a major hit of the fall 2013 TV season,” in other words, Robin Williams and Sarah Michele Gellar will have to work alongside James Wolk, Hamish Linklater and Amanda Setton—their costars on the CBS show—to hold viewers’ attention even when McDonalds and Clarkson are nowhere to be found.

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