Plot: Charlie (Tommy Wiseau) runs an apartment complex, but this is not your usual business, not even close. He is more than just a building supervisor, he is like a friend to his tenants and finds himself involved in their lives, for better or worse. While most of the residents are friends or at least cordial to each other, that doesn’t mean the place is drama free. There is always some kind of personal crisis or trouble going on, over drugs, basketball, lost keys, triple vanilla sex, overabundant cleavage, exploring sexuality, or of course, local bad boy Ricky Rick (Tommy Wiseau). But at the end of the day, this strange, colorful group of people are like a family, no matter how dysfunctional and out of control things get.
Entertainment Value: This off the rails sitcom was the brainchild of Tommy Wiseau, the otherworldly genius behind The Room. Wiseau once again serves as writer, producer, director, and star and he evens ups the ante this time around, by playing two different prominent characters. This is not the sincere drama turned outlandish comedy of The Room however, as this time Wiseau aims for laughs for the start and loads the series with his usual, inexplicable sense of humor. These episodes involve a lot of people greeting other with hellos and goodbyes, explaining things that don’t seem to need an explanation (“I work here now.”), and aimless encounters that have wild tonal shifts and an awkward, in the moment cadence. The dialogue here is rapid fire, outlandish, and a lot of fun, provided you appreciate Wiseau’s unique style and of course, seeing him in action again is always a lot of fun. The tone is pure slapstick, over the top chaos, so don’t expect subtle elements here, as it is aggressive and broad by design. The commercial break bumpers are repetitive, but just as random and bizarre as you’d expect. These first six episodes have no real stories, just a bunch of folks interacting and rattling off strange, but often hilarious dialogue.
While the show features a large ensemble cast, this series has the magic of Tommy Wiseau in every scene, even those he doesn’t appear in. But in case you’re concerned that he has a small role in The Neighbors, you can relax as the man himself is in almost all of the show’s scenes. He always seems to be in the middle of other people’s business, so there is no lack of Wiseau in this one. His presence here is ridiculous and unhinged, none of the dramatic attempts as seen in The Room. As Charlie he is a little less amped up, but he goes totally off the deep end as Ricky Rick, in one of the most surreal efforts I’ve seen in a television show. I admit, I am a massive Wiseau fan and I love his unique style, so if you don’t appreciate his talents, The Neighbors likely won’t win you over. The series also features a host of other performers, most in small, but recurring roles that are driven by random, awkward interactions with each other. Like surreal, offbeat stuff that will you shaking your head, questioning your own sanity, and laughing your ass off, all at the same time. The Neighbors is an acquired taste to be sure, but for fans of Tommy Wiseau, it is a must for your home video collection.