After watching this week’s installment of “WandaVision,” I continued scrolling around on Disney+ to find other new additions to the original programming. I stumbled upon “Earth to Ned” and checked out the first two episodes. The show is produced by Jim Henson Studios, so you know from the beginning that you will be treated to some unique and far out characters. The show features on Ned, an alien, who has been sent to conquer Earth, but he decides to cancel his mission after he falls in love with Earth and it’s culture.
Each episode follows the same formula: two guests visit the set on Ned’s ship and engages in typical late night talk show banter with the host. The first episode welcomes Andy Richter of Conan O’Brien fame, as well as actress Gillian Jacobs. Since Ned is a novice to the hosting game, he asks his guests for help about how he is doing. In between guests, his co-host, Cornelius, (spoiler alert: he’s the best part of the show), does an in-the-field reporting segment with hilarious results. In the first episode, he speaks to writers from other late night programs, while in the second episode, he heads to the Improv and performs a set.
In addition to Ned and Cornelius, viewers are also introduced to the Clods, a collection of small creatures that acted as the band in the first episode. After not doing too well with instruments, Ned fires the Clods, but they are still on set providing some comic relief during the second episode. A sentient AI named BETI pops in from time to time on a video wall behind Ned and the guest. We are also very fond of the Roaster Toaster which is what you’d expect it to be — a toaster that meanders around on stage “roasting” Ned as he tries to maintain order on the set!
When the interview is over, Ned has the guest strike their favorite comedic pose before beaming them off of the ship and back to Earth. At the end of the episode, Ned records a mission report to send back to his planet where he recaps the lessons he has learned from the guests. What makes this part of the show enjoyable and hilarious is the mission logs are being send to the admiral, who is Ned’s father. The humor is balanced between Ned trying to explain why Earth hasn’t been invaded yet, along with his musings about why Emperor Daddy was not a better father. Each episode runs on average around 25 minutes, so it is easily watched. The first ten episodes were released all at once back in September, while the second ten episodes of the season were released at the beginning of January.
Since the show lacks a central plot to drive the story forward, it isn’t a great series to pick to binge watch in a single setting. It actually feels like Disney+ misfired with the release schedule on this series by dropping them as a single offering, as opposed releasing them individually each week or in smaller installments.
On a whole, the show is funny — it has moments that caused me to laugh out loud, as well as other moments where the humor is drier. While young children will likely love the visuals of the show, the humor and conversation may be over their heads, but, kids around the age of ten are probably good to watch this show to appreciate the show.
We are definitely going to add this to our rotation of things to watch on Disney+, but will definitely enjoy it in smaller doses. Have you seen “Earth to Ned?” What did you think? Did you enjoy all of the episodes being available at once or should it have been spread out? Let us know what you think!