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The Orville is an hour-long science fiction dramedy that centers on the captain and crew of the spaceship The Orville. If you watch this series thinking it will be much like Star Trek you are both right and wrong. More in line with Galaxy Quest, The Orville takes a more parodic take on the science fiction genre.

The Orville starts off with Seth MacFarlane’s character, Ed Mercer, being appointed the captain of The Orville (even though is his boss Admiral Halsey (Victor Garber, Alias) was very clear about the fact that Mercer wasn’t the first choice). Mercer is very eager to prove he’s up for the job, as the last year his track record hasn’t been great. Ever since he caught his wife, Kelly Grayson (Adrianne Palicki, Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.) cheating on him he has been going through a rough patch.

Being captain of The Orville allows Mercer to show what he’s capable of. But there is one problem. His XO (executive officer) turns out to be his ex-wife (or should I say, X-wife). At this point, one might start to think this show isn’t going to be any good, as it has to rely on this cheesy plot device for comedic relief. Luckily, this plot choice seems to be part of a bigger scheme. Namely, parody.

 

 

The Orville uses several tactics to create some comedic relief. Besides the obvious things like Mercer’s ex-wife becoming his XO and the jokes surrounding that situation, the show also displays some more hidden ‘jokes’. Most people will have caught on to the fact that the crew of The Orville dresses similarly (if not exactly the same) to the characters in Star Trek. Some characters also resemble ones from the movie Galaxy Quest. However, it seems like the extraordinarily long departure scene, where we saw The Orville leave its base station from numerous different angles, was also a part of the parody.

All in all The Orville doesn’t take itself too seriously, and I advise you to do the same. The show will not be entertaining if you go in expecting a high quality science fiction show with some humor, like you might be used to from Star Trek or Stargate. The Orville might be an hour-long show, the focus is very much to make people laugh.

The Orville airs on Thursdays at 9/8c on FOX.

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