A smart rule for a new TV series is sell, but stay grounded. Apparently Rob Schneider didn’t get the memo as it relates to his upcoming CBS comedy “Rob!” Before an episode even airs, Schneider compares the program – which centers on his character, his new wife (Claudia Bassols) and her extended Mexican family – to three classic comedies.
“It’s ‘All in the Mexican Family’ and I’m Basil Fawlty,” he says making reference to multi-Emmy winner “All in the Family” and the British comedy “Fawlty Towers.” Schneider, while at the Television Critics Association Winter press tour, didn’t stop there explaining that the show was essentially “I Love Lucy” with the leads reversed.
Cheech Marin, who plays Rob’s father-in-law, echoes this sentiment when discussing his character.
“He’s kind of in the Archie Bunker range and that’s exactly how I wanted to portray him,” Marin says. “He’s not the bleeding heart liberal.” Marin plays Fernando, an extreme Republican who employs numerous illegal aliens at one of his many car washes.
Schneider says that the series is looking to address cultural issues, especially in a increasingly diverse America. But he plans to do so with a comic outcome.
“I don’t think you want to stay away from the stereotypes. I think you want to confront and deal with them,” Schneider says. “If we can shed some light on it in a way that can be fun and people can relate to, that’s fine.”
Whether “Rob!” will qualify for the pantheon of TV sitcoms, that remains to be seen.