Men of a Certain Age - New TNT Drama Review


Anyone who knows me knows that I LOVE me some TV time. I need that escape each night after the kids have gone to bed. I love being swept away with great stories and plot lines. I can't wait to find out just what will happen next. TV shows  allow me to forget about my problems and my stresses - even if its just for a little while. Lord knows I need the laughs after my day of chasing around three crazy boys is over! Which is why I was happy to review a new show on TNT, Men of a Certain Age.

Men of a Certain Age, starring Ray Romano, Scott Bakula and Andre Braugher, is a drama about three men that are college buddies and their path through midlife together. Below is the show description taken from the TNT website.


John Lennon once wrote, “Life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans.” For three men entering the second act of their lives, those words are starting to hit home in TNT’s newest original series, MEN OF A CERTAIN AGE. This wry drama stars Emmy® winner Ray Romano (Everybody Loves Raymond), Golden Globe® winner Scott Bakula (Quantum Leap, Star Trek: Enterprise) and Emmy winner Andre Braugher (Homicide: Life on the Street, TNT’s Salem’s Lot). It marks a return to series television for Romano, who created MEN OF A CERTAIN AGE with Everybody Loves Raymond Emmy winner Mike Royce. The two serve as executive producers, along with Rory Rosegarten and Cary Hoffman.

MEN OF A CERTAIN AGE explores the unique bonds of male friendship among three men experiencing the changes and challenges of mid-life. They have been best friends since college but now, in their 40s, are navigating through the second act of their lives. Joe (Romano) is a friendly, slightly neurotic, recently separated father of two who had dreams of being a professional golfer. Now he owns and runs a party store. Terry (Bakula) is a laid-back, handsome actor who seems to breeze through life (and women). Lately, he’s spending more time working as a temp than as an actor. And Owen (Braugher) is an overstressed husband and father of three who endures constant criticism from his father, for whom he works as a car salesman.

These friends face very different challenges. Joe, who currently lives in a hotel, tries to connect with his kids and is dipping his toe in the dating pool, while also struggling with the gambling problem that may have ended his marriage. The unmarried Terry scoffs at domestic issues but sometimes wonders if his own single life is all it’s cracked up to be. Owen does everything he can to climb the sales board at his father’s car dealership and keep his cool over the seemingly endless renovation project in the home he can barely afford. Through it all, these men are there for each other when it counts.

The pilot episode of Men of a Certain Age aired last Monday, December 7th.  If you missed it you can go to the TNT site and watch the full episode.  New episodes air Monday nights at 10/9 central.  Here is the TNT promo just to give you an idea of what its about.

My Take

I was actually pleasantly surprised that to find out that I really like this show.  I didn't know if I would be able to relate to men going through the trials of midlife or care for that matter.  I really like Ray Romano's humor.  I loved him in Everybody Loves Raymond so I was really happy to see his return to TV, and I like that he still has the same sense of humor even with more serious subject matter.  There were definitely a couple of points in during the show with his character that I didn't fully understand.  But I like Ray Romano so I will be sticking around to find out why his character, Joe, does some of the things that he does.  I know a few men like him, forties, in the middle of divorce yet still in love with their wife, reliving glory days and worrying about their kids so I can somewhat relate to what he is going though based on my friends experiences.

Scott Bakula's character, Terry, I don't really get at all.  I know some men like him but for me I just wasn't convinced by Scott Bakula's performance.  I thought that most of the scenes involving him weren't anything special.  I am not really into what is going on with his character and I don't really care.  I definitely hope to be more engaged by him in future episodes because overall I do think that Scott Bakula is a great actor.  

I really connected with Andre Braugher's character, Owen, the most.  I see a little of my own husband in this character.  Just a little.  I also sympathized with Owen's wife because she seems to be driving force that pushes Owen to want success for himself and his family. I relate to that as I have had to do a lot of pushing in order to get my own husband on the ball at work.  I think the main reason that I found Owen's character so interesting is that he is a car salesman.  Mainly because I have worked in the car dealership biz for the last 14 years.  I was cracking up at the antics that they showcased on the show that happen everyday between car salesmen in dealerships.  I also think that maybe because I do understand the inner workings of the car biz I was able to understand just how crushing Owen's situation was for him.  There aren't that many shows about the car biz on TV and for this reason alone I know that I will be watching Men of a Certain Age on a regular basis.  Plus, I think that many men at car dealerships fall into this category of men, which in itself is kind of humorous to me.  

I definitely  recommend, at the very least, checking out Men of a Certain Age.  I think that the plot lines could use a little help but just as when any new show starts you have to watch a few episodes in order to get a feel for the characters and what is going on.  It has great actors, but I am definitely looking forward to see how they can develop these characters and make me want to know more about them.