From the very first glance, it is obvious that The Detour is not your usual family TV comedy. It is funny, both physically and figuratively, but it is also includes content that is not really suitable for children. And that is what makes this series so appealing.
In the first season, Nate (Jason Jones), took the entire family on a forced road trip because he was fired from his job, but wished to regain his position through blackmailing his employer. As we saw, nothing along their way was successful, to say the least.
In the season 2 premiere, the family moves to New York, to accommodate to Nate’s new job in a weird company that practically sells water pills. But while the first season has one complete arc, the season 2 story was actually two different arcs, the first, in which the “true” identity of Robin was revealed through her real husband, Carlos (the great Jeffrey Vincent Parise). The second, after we get rid of Carlos and the divorce trial is over, is when we find out who Nate is really working for, and another wild road trip takes place.
What makes The Detour that different? Is it the content, which is many times TV-MA and includes a lot of sex and cursing? Is it the real life adventures which are woven into comical, almost nonsensical events that might happen in real life, but will probably not? Is it the huge investment in guest stars, supporting characters and big events that are not far from film quality? Probably all of it, and much, much more.
Built through a narrative of police, FBI and Post Office investigations, we slowly discover more and more about Nate and Robin. Robin’s troubling past was hinted throughout season 1, but came to light in season 2, when different people knew her by different names. She was actually a wife-or-hire, for green card purposes. Carlos may have been one of those husbands, but he stick around, and while Robin settled with Nate, Carlos still wanted her. One of the twins, in a stunt that is scientifically impossible, is his (Jareb name is actually Spanish).
Once Nate solved the Carlos problem, in the way his father thought him, he figured out his employer was actually a scam. It was too good to be true, right? Selling water pills. And who might that boss be? A scam master? Robin’s father, the one who thought her what she is today (or was). The road trip (and sea) was a nice homage to the first season. Discovering the “ass” that Robin carried around all the time was actually part of Saddam Hussein’s statue, and that her father was behind it, was genius.
No wonder The Detour was renewed for a third season. Being the strong comedy that it is, I didn’t expect otherwise.
One issue I had with the second season, was the short time we had with their New York neighbors. The house manager, and the black family were great characters (the stand off in the street in the first episode was huge), and we almost totally forgot about them in the wild ride. Seeing that the next season might happen in Alaska, I wish we will see them again.
There is a lot more to write about The Detour, but the post better be concise. So, what did you think about the second season?