Premiering on HBO on Sunday is the new comedy, Silicon Valley. The show is loosely based on the experiences Mike Judge had while working in the valley in the late ’80s. Judge will be producing, directing and writing most episodes of the new show. Mike Judge is best known for producing such hit shows as the animated King of the Hill and Beavis and Butt-Head. He is also praised for the 1999 cult-classic dark comedy, Office Space. The 2006 film Idiocracy is also a great yet lesser known comedy by Judge.
The series will follow the lives of six programmers all living together and trying to make it big in the northern part of California, Silicon Valley. The show is described as a technology based comedy about these six people who are the most qualified to succeed yet the least able to handle success. The HBO series is trying to attract the tech-savy ‘cord-cutters’, which is what they call the young adults who have stopped paying for cable and rely on Netflix or Amazon to watch TV and movies. A high risk for a company that is a cable network, as research has shown that Netflix surpassed cable subscribers last year by a large margin. HBO is relying on their app HBOGo which lets users watch all the series and movies HBO has to offer on any laptop, iPad and even PlayStation gaming consoles to attract their targeted audience.
The new HBO comedy Silicon Valley has collected a cast of hilarious actors mostly known for playing smaller parts in other shows. Martin Starr from the cult-classic Freaks and Geeks will play one of the programmers, also the always funny Kumail Nanjiani best known for his hilarious characters on Portlandia will also play one of the six programmers. The tall and funny Zach Woods, best known for playing the awkward boss in the TV show The Office will also be a part of the comedic cast.
HBO is taking on risk on Judge and the whole new digital age premise of the show, in the past shows that followed programmers in the valley have failed. The 2012 reality show Start Up’s- Silicon Valley flopped and was canceled, the 2013 Amazon produced series Betas also had a difficult time gaining viewers and a second season has yet to be announced.
The series will try to make fun and at the same time show how the geeks from high school are now billionaires from creating their own apps or programs. The show starts off with a party in which rock star Kid Rock is doing a personal performance, at one point in the party one of the guests comments on how the rock star is most likely the poorest one in the room. While it is fun to poke at the rich, it is also something that is not relatable to most viewers, and could be seen as a turn-off.
The new HBO comedy Silicon Valley will premiere today on HBO after the highly anticipated season four premiere of Game of Thrones, HBO is hoping to get fans of Game of Thrones to stay tuned in and become fans of the new series. Monday will tell us if that was the case or not, and if the new show will grow to become a hit show.
Opinion by Miguel A. Tamayo