When it comes to workplace comedies, classics like Cheers, The Office, Parks and Recreation and 30 Rock have set the bar pretty high, so much so that other attempts can end up looking pretty wan by comparison. Recently NBC’s recent superheroes-themed Powerless failed to capture the spirit of those classics, but newcomers occasionally stand a chance if they find a way to distinguish themselves from the rest. One such contender is Miracle Workers, a new TBS comedy from Simon Rich, the creator of the recently canceled but fantastic Man Seeking Woman on FX.
Miracle Workers, the new Heaven-set workplace comedy sounds promising for three important reasons. First, it stars Daniel Radcliffe of Harry Potter and Swiss Army Man fame as a low-level angel named Craig whose primary job involves handling all of humanity’s prayers to his boss, God. And who, you’re probably thinking, will play the Big Man (or Woman) upstairs? Owen Wilson. Yes, that Owen Wilson. Per the official press release, Wilson’s God has apparently checked out of his heavenly duties to pursue his various hobbies full-time — leaving Craig to prevent the Earth’s destruction on his own.
The basic premise and the two leads sound good enough and the creative team Miracle Workers offers two more important reasons to look forward to it. It’s based on Rich’s first novel What in God’s Name, which was well received by the New York Times and other outlets in 2012. This means the ideas behind the series have been gestating for at least a few years, and with the young showrunner’s past experience and the support of executive producer and Saturday Night Live creator Lorne Michaels, the show’s pitch packs quite the punch.
As for the third and final reason for why Miracle Workers shows such promise, look no further than TBS. The cable channel’s recent rebranding as a comedy-centric network has produced popular and acclaimed work at programs as varied as Full Frontal with Samantha Bee, Angie Tribeca, People of Earth and Search Party. And while everyone they’ve made hasn’t been a surefire hit, their overall track record is pretty good all things considered. Besides, who wouldn’t want to see Harry Potter become an angel to Owen Wilson’s God?