About a Boy’ proves to be ‘practical and appealing’

It’s rare to see in today’s television a practical and appealing coming-of-age story. One reason may be that while Hollywood often loves to take things up a size and make them larger than life, the best series are based on a novel, which keeps a program believable and entertaining.

NBC’s pilot episode of “About a Boy” has aired; an Americanized remake of the famous novel by renowned British writer Nick Hornby. Made well-known by the 2002 Hugh Grant movie, “About a Boy” focuses on a 36-year-old British playboy content with filling his carnal needs and living on his own who reluctantly begins to have a give-and-take friendship with his neighbor’s 12-year-old son. Each of them eventually start to learn things about life and love and that maybe what you want is not always what you need.

The movie version is touching and heart-felt, while still very comedic and entertaining. NBC’s pilot episode gives a new perspective on a good idea. Set in the diverse city of San Francisco, the role of the-sometimes-charming American, Will, is played by actor David Walton, an exceptional fit for the role.

The next door neighbors (a single mother and her 11-year-old son), recently moving from England apparently, begin to settle in. After Will meets an attractive musician at a single parents support group, and lies about having a young son named Jonah, 11-year-old Marcus (played by Benjamin Stockham) and Will now have a good reason to get along – and entertainment ensues.

Will and Marcus soon learn there is something they both need; Marcus needs a solid father-figure, and Will needs some form of responsibility in his life that goes beyond expressing his narcissistic playboy mentality.

One cannot help but be entertained by the clash of reluctant love and honest friendship, as well as the unexpected nature of such a relationship.

NBC’s “About a Boy” a better-written and much more real version of “Two and a Half Men”, just without Jon Cryer and with a hopeful-to-change Charlie Sheen. It gets a recommend-you-watch-it rating.

Abbas Khan Cook can be reached at abbas.khancook@student.shu.edu.

Author: Staff Writer

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