The truth is way, way out there in sci-fi spoof 'Ghosted'

Adam Scott and Craig Robinson have close encounters of the comic kind in this fun new Fox sitcom.

Richard Trenholm Former Movie and TV Senior Editor
Richard Trenholm was CNET's film and TV editor, covering the big screen, small screen and streaming. A member of the Film Critic's Circle, he's covered technology and culture from London's tech scene to Europe's refugee camps to the Sundance film festival.
Expertise Films, TV, Movies, Television, Technology
Richard Trenholm
2 min read

Move over Mulder and Scully: there's a new duo of extra-terrestrial investigators on the case in sci-fi sitcom spoof "Ghosted". The truth is out there, and they're going to have fun finding it.

Craig Robinson of "The Office" and "Hot Tub Time Machine" stars alongside Adam Scott of "Parks and Recreation" as two lovable losers pulled into a secret government agency's hunt for a missing agent. Robinson plays a street-smart detective, while Scott is a disgraced academic convinced his wife was abducted by aliens. Together these two slacker men in black stumble upon an otherworldly conspiracy, with hilarious consequences. 

Don't think too much about the sci-fi element. The first episode doesn't. The secretive Bureau Underground, which recruits our two heroes, has zero depth. It's a secret government agency, these guys are agents now, let's get to the funny bits. Yeah, it's called "Ghosted," but it's about aliens. Don't worry about it.

There are some fantasy-flavoured gags, but most of the humour comes from the priceless pairing of Robinson and Scott. They're both hilarious in even the smallest moments and the show plays to their strengths. Within moments Robinson, known for his musical comedy, is crooning Steve Winwood, while Scott is nerding out about aliens.

Their comic pairing clearly has legs, and a late dark twist suggests future episodes might flesh out the sci-fi and fantasy elements too. The hints at an ongoing mystery and the bizarre foe they face in the first episode also call to mind the anarchic "Dirk Gently" TV series. 

"Ghosted" is one of two sci-fi genre spoofs debuting on Fox this fall, along with Star Trek parody "The Orville". That show, with its 45 minute episodes, leans into sci-fi set pieces with awkward results. But "Ghosted", which comes in traditional 25-minute chunks, knows exactly what it is: it's short, it's silly, it's funny.

If the show can find the bizarre humour in its supernatural premise rather than coasting on the charm of its two leads goofing on each other then it could be worth sticking with. We certainly want to believe.

"Ghosted" premieres on Fox on Sunday, Oct. 1.

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