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Average Joe Review 2023 Tv Show Series Season Cast Crew Online
After the death of his father, Teddy, Pittsburgh-based plumber Joe Washington (Deon Cole) thinks his biggest problem will be deciding what to do with his dad’s Steelers season tickets. That all changes when he drops by his dad’s tow truck office and finds a trio of Russian mobsters who are very intent on finding the $10 million Teddy stole from them. Created by Robb Cullen (Lucky) and enhanced by an appealing ensemble, Average Joe serves up an inventive blend of hair-raising crime thriller suspense, dark humor, and thorny family drama.
That unexpected run-in between Joe and those Russians — including Dimitri (Chris Petrovski), a young man who’s been dating Joe’s daughter, Jennifer (Ashley Olivia Fisher), for the last few months — gets very violent, very fast. By the time his best friend Leon (Malcolm Barrett) shows up to check on him, there are two dead henchmen on the floor and a major mystery to solve: How the hell did Teddy get mixed up with notorious mobster Nicolai Dzhugashvili (Pasha D. Lychnikoff) — and more importantly, can Joe and Leon find the money and disappear with their families before the Russians find them?
Average Joe propels its tightly plotted caper forward with an enjoyably manic, “anything that can go wrong will go wrong” energy. Just as Joe and Leon begin contemplating how $10 million dollars could change their lives, their cop pal, Benjamin “Touch” Tuchawuski (Michael Trucco), stumbles into the crime scene. Addicted to pills and frustrated with his “desk jockey” job on the force, Touch wants in. “No one can know about this,” he warns them. “I mean no one.” But thanks to a series of clumsy mishaps and unexpected obstacles, the trio is quickly forced to expand their circle of trust to include Joe’s daughter, his sensible wife, Angela (Tammy Townsend), and Leon’s true-crime obsessed spouse, Cathy (Cynthia Kaye McWilliams).
With Nicolai’s men at their backs, the gang scrambles to locate the hidden cash while struggling to reconcile their yearning for a better life with their innate morality. “This is not who we are,” insists Angela, after Leon and Cathy devise a plan to dispose of the Russians’ bodies. But it’s who they rapidly become, and Average Joe makes that dreadful journey — filled with frantic rationalizations and wobbly deflections — haunting to watch.
Cullen wisely leavens the tension and violence with bursts of humor — some morbid (two characters dismember a corpse while Cheryl Lynn’s disco classic “Got to Be Real” blares in the background), and some incongruously light-hearted. Just when things start to get a little too intense, we’ll be treated to a scene of two gruff Russian mobsters (Alan Hechner and Nikita Krillov) bickering over the proper way to operate a Keurig coffee maker or discussing why Juan Pablo was their least favorite Bachelor. Jokes are weaved into otherwise straight-faced dialogue. Touch’s colleague (Aaron Quick Nelson) has a law enforcement podcast called Cop: A Feel; Winny (Patti Tippo), the snooty, racist woman married to Joe’s boss (Darin Toonder), works for a real estate company called The Privilege Group.
Barrett, a standout in Better Off Ted and Timeless, is affable and amusing as Leon, whose amateurish approach to pulling off the gang’s scheme provides regular laughs. McWilliams is a scene-stealer as Cathy, a saucy, whip-smart problem solver whose fascination with murder mysteries comes in very handy. Comedian-writer-actor Cole, so consistently hilarious on black-ish, gives a compelling dramatic performance as Joe. Terrorized by mounting danger and seething with resentment at his father for thrusting him into this nightmare scenario, Joe finds himself increasingly desperate and untethered from the man he used to be.
This show is not for the squeamish. The violence is frequent and graphic, and the multiple torture scenes border on gratuitous. But that’s what the fast-forward button is for, I suppose. It’s worth enduring a little discomfort for Average, which is anything but. Grade: B+
The first three episodes of Average Joe are streaming on BET+ now. New episodes drop every Thursday.