TV Club: Portlandia suffers the disability of being annoying instead of funny

The brand of comedy that Portlandia practices means that it’s a show constantly at risk of being too annoying. It mines the majority of its humor out of people who are frequently selfish, hypocritical, short-sighted, or willfully ignorant, meaning that it’s built a large stable of characters who most sane people wouldn’t want to spend an extended period of time with. The show’s rarely afraid to have fun at their expense, but every so often it feels as if it’s enjoying how awful they can be and how blissfully unaware they are of that reality. This is where the sketch format tends to work in the show’s favor, as it has the ability to pivot away from a character after a couple minutes and move onto the next story, and the odds are good that if one didn’t entertain the next one will …

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