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Audience Network’s 'You Me Her' Mixes Blunt Sex with Wit
March 21, 2016  | By David Hinckley

The Audience Network’s latest offbeat romantic adventure series, You Me Her, creates a number of profound life choices for its characters.

It also creates some choices for the viewer, like whether to look at this show as a rom-com for our liberated times or as thinly cloaked soft porn.

You Me Her, which premieres at 9 p.m. ET Tuesday on DirecTV Ch. 239, doesn’t show naked bodies and, by present standards, isn’t especially graphic in its language.

But the first two episodes, at least, focus on sex the way Colonel Sanders focuses on chicken. Every character, male and female, seems comfortable discussing his or her sex life, bluntly, in the presence of whoever happens to be listening.

If you’ve been looking for TV to address the erotic potential of a televised football game, or the nuances of a “foot job,” You Me Her will answer your prayers.

Okay, and we should emphasize here that it’s a comedy.

Jack (Greg Poehler) and Emma (Rachel Blanchard) – have you noticed that TV characters these days increasingly have no last names? – are a happily married couple in their 30s.

They live in Portland and have fulfilling jobs. What they don’t have are children, which they want.

As we join the story, they have renewed their attention to the means by which children are conceived. They fear their youthful inspiration for the process has been replaced by a kind of dutiful attention.

Jack’s brother Gabe (Kevin O’Grady) helpfully suggests Jack try an escort service – not for better sex, but just to, you know, reignite the pilot light.

Whatever the merits of that idea, it does have the potential to turn an everyday suburban complaint into a whole TV show. So Jack rings up Izzy (Priscilla Faia).

Izzy is a clean-cut college student who needs money and has been assured by her roommate Nina (Melanie Papalia) that becoming an escort is no more complicated than working at Starbucks. Right.

So Izzy, who older viewers will notice has a strong resemblance to the late Natalie Wood, meets up with Jack.

Their session is funny and surprisingly insightful before it turns really, really awkward – so awkward that Jack feels obliged to blurt out a full confession to Emma.

No filters. Told you.

Emma reports this development to her next-door neighbor and best friend Carmen (Jennifer Spence). Then she arranges to meet this Izzy at a restaurant.

What starts off as a “You Ain’t Woman Enough to Take My Man” moment ends up closer to the restaurant scene in When Harry Met Sally. Before you know it, three’s company.

That’s not a spoiler, by the way. That’s the setup of You Me Her.

Naturally further revelations start to emerge, none of which change the initial premise that Jack and Emma are quite in love. That love just may have more flexible parameters than they had thought.

Poehler, Blanchard and Faia all handle their characters nicely, giving the 10-episode show a rom-com feel more often than it feels like a sitcom. That’s good.

The writing sprinkles some wit and perception into the sex stuff, and if You Me Her won’t convince anybody this setup is the new normal in suburban relationships, it’s got decent satiric aim.

Exactly where it can take the premise isn’t immediately clear. The sex part is clear. The question for You Me Her is where else didja get very far.

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