Clipped is centered around a group of old high-school Boston classmates, whose broken dreams have led them to work at a local barbershop. Right away, you're hit with models and predictability. Tisdale (promotional material already insinuated this is her vehicle) and Mike Castle are the blatantly designed eye-candy of the bunch, and surprise, surprise, their characters Danni and AJ were popular in school and they hooked up once. Just in case you don't catch the so-not-a-hint that they'll either be a couple or play a flirtatious game of cat-and-mouse for the next season or so (if the show lasts), repeated reminders of their prom one-night-stand are all over the script. By episode 3, they have another one-nighter and Danni admits to having unresolved feelings for AJ to Charmaine (Diona Reasonover), the one black character who, surprise, surprise, is unapproachable, snarky and full of quips. Joy (Lauren Lapkus) is a devout Catholic sweetheart, Mo (Matt Cook) is the "dumb teddy bear," Ben (Ryan Pinkston) is the former outcast getting revenge by being an obnoxious boss and Buzzy (Cheers' George Wendt) is the gay previous shop owner. This diversity would be more refreshing if it wasn't used for laughs. Trying too hard to be edgy and tongue-in-cheek, the show hits you over the head with racial, religious and gay jokes, especially in the pilot. There was a 2-for-1 line where Ben calls Charmaine, who's also Jewish, Dr. Dreidel. *Rubs temples* The sarcastic, love-hate relationship dynamic between all of them is supposed to be endearing, but the actors don't have any ensemble chemistry to convince you that these people, who would never be peers on paper, are actually friends and have known each other for years. Additionally, there's no one to get invested in. Danni and AJ aren't interesting, charming or unique enough to flagship and lead like they're supposed to, and because the others are just there for comic relief and support, they aren't given the wind to be more than one-liner machines.
Clipped does manage to be funny and create a chuckle, but it's missing too many vital elements to set any standards or be memorable. It's aura of familiarity is more "seen it before" versus "warm nostalgia." Judge for yourself: Clipped airs Tuesdays at 10pmEST.