Binge Guide

Weekly Binge: The Wrong Mans

by | August 14, 2014 | Comments

James Corden
is not exactly a household name in America…yet. As the frontrunner for the Late Late Show gig when Craig Ferguson steps down in 2015, and with an upcoming role in Into the Woods
, Corden is about to become a lot more familiar. He is already a huge celebrity in the UK (just take a peek at his 4.3 million Twitter followers) and in 2012, he won the Tony Award for Best Leading Actor in a Play with “One Man, Two Guvnors,” beating Philip Seymour Hoffman, James Earl Jones, Frank Langella and John Lithgow.

So, to introduce you to this triple threat from across the pond, we bring you the genre-bending slapstick comedy/spy thriller The Wrong Mans, a tidy little binge co-produced by BBC and Hulu.

The Wrong Mans

The Wrong Mans

What’s the premise? After answering a phone found on the side of the road, Sam (Mathew Baynton), an unwitting office drone, gets sucked into a thrilling kidnapping mystery, bringing his co-worker Phil (Corden) along with him.

What’s it like? The high production values on The Wrong Mans makes it feel more like an action film in the realm of Wanted than a 30-minute British TV series. Slick and moody, the show takes the classic “wrong man” tale made so famous by Alfred Hitchcock and serves it up as equal helpings of parody and spy thriller.

Where can I see it? The complete first season is available on DVD and Blu-ray, as well as streaming on Amazon Instant Video, Vudu, iTunes, and Hulu.

How long will it take? As far as binges go, this one’s a cakewalk. With one season of only six half-hour episodes, The Wrong Mans is the same level of commitment as watching a three-hour movie.

What do the critics think? Season one is Certified Fresh on the Tomatometer at 90 percent. Critics praised the fast-paced action of The Wrong Mans as well as its laugh-out-loud comedy. Melissa Maerz of Weekly wrote, “Just as adept with suspense as slapstick humor, it’s both a piss-take of action dramas and a strong action drama in its own right.” And most of the critics call out the comedic chops of both Corden and Baynton as a reason to watch The Wrong Mans. Brian Lowry of Variety said, “Corden and Baynton bring considerable charm to their broadly drawn roles, and have the natural rapport necessary for any odd couple pairing.”

Why should I watch this? The Wrong Mans feels like a show that will eventually be re-made into an American series, so you may as well get in on the ground floor. The onscreen chemistry between Baynton and Corden makes for a fun, life-affirming bromance, while the fast clip of the mystery keeps you enthralled for the full three hours. The plot is overly complex (on purpose), but delivers suspense and a satisfying resolution. Simply put, The Wrong Mans is a lot of fun.

What’s my next step? Fans of Corden and Bayton should definitely check out their British sitcom, Gavin & Stacey, which ran for three seasons on BBC 3 and won a BAFTA in 2008. Also, it’s impossible not to compare The Wrong Mans to Edgar Wright’s Three Flavours Cornetto Trilogy with Simon Pegg and Nick Frost: Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, and The World’s End. To see the masterworks of the mistaken identity genre, start at the source with Alfred Hitchcock’s The Man Who Knew Too Much from 1934, his own (even better) remake of it from 1956, North By Northwest (1959), and, of course, The Wrong Man (1957). For a parody of the genre, check out Bill Murray in The Man Who Knew Too Little. What it lacks in taut mystery, it makes up for with Bill Murray’s funny performance.

Are you ready for an adventure with The Wrong Mans? Tell us why

For more TV news, visit the Rotten Tomatoes TV Zone.

Tag Cloud

zero dark thirty Toys harry potter period drama comiccon Comics on TV DirecTV Teen singing competition finale green book aliens strong female leads dragons spinoff Trailer 2020 Amazon Writers Guild of America cooking IFC Films werewolf Amazon Prime Interview Disney streaming service Syfy elevated horror facebook Britbox crossover Fall TV Stephen King mutant Photos book Comedy TLC Mindy Kaling Mary poppins cops Funimation sitcom Winners science fiction Netflix Christmas movies Action Hallmark Video Games Paramount First Reviews Tubi Academy Awards New York Comic Con Holiday Fantasy Chernobyl PaleyFest Apple Emmy Nominations Arrowverse 2016 Ovation Adult Swim Sci-Fi Elton John binge Lionsgate unscripted AMC TBS WGN ESPN south america 21st Century Fox comics Nominations Sundance Now TCA 2017 cancelled discovery Black History Month The Witch A&E golden globes medical drama Amazon Prime Video Paramount Network Infographic tv talk Cannes teaser Animation dogs 20th Century Fox Heroines Sony Pictures blaxploitation romance independent Drama Acorn TV Holidays Oscars renewed TV shows festivals The Arrangement Pixar YA Trivia TCM Logo SXSW crime transformers Anna Paquin CNN miniseries breaking bad natural history 24 frames OWN Box Office game show Disney Channel Awards Tour canceled San Diego Comic-Con children's TV Kids & Family hist SDCC latino cats thriller CW Seed streaming Baby Yoda historical drama movies Crunchyroll Horror technology based on movie DGA Captain marvel Nickelodeon A24 FX on Hulu ratings space Disney+ Disney Plus Shondaland Women's History Month Biopics Hulu biography Extras jamie lee curtis TV Land Hallmark Christmas movies Premiere Dates spider-man The Walking Dead Masterpiece Valentine's Day Classic Film reboot CBS All Access anime Bravo GoT Tomatazos indie DC Comics Pet Sematary See It Skip It Pop robots Mary Poppins Returns American Society of Cinematographers GIFs Podcast 71st Emmy Awards FX diversity 2019 police drama 007 Starz documentary BET Black Mirror TNT Turner Classic Movies boxoffice canceled TV shows The CW witnail Dark Horse Comics Countdown 2015 Tarantino spy thriller DC streaming service VH1 Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt stand-up comedy E3 spanish language joker Film Festival Spring TV Western 45 Lucasfilm dc Superheroe Rocky versus Set visit sports President slashers BBC TCA TCA Winter 2020 Spike psychological thriller cancelled TV shows video Marathons political drama FOX cancelled TV series Lifetime Christmas movies Binge Guide Sundance National Geographic Trophy Talk what to watch Awards MCU History Super Bowl Film Food Network USA Network true crime screen actors guild doctor who casting APB Marvel Studios Polls and Games 2018 Character Guide CBS PBS LGBTQ talk show VICE TIFF ABC Mystery blockbuster movie cancelled television Pop TV revenge Emmys Endgame Columbia Pictures series quibi Superheroes politics social media Musical MTV rotten movies we love zombie Star Wars Brie Larson sag awards Freeform richard e. Grant comic 2017 SundanceTV USA MSNBC Television Academy Song of Ice and Fire Walt Disney Pictures batman NBC Best and Worst travel screenings DC Universe cars sequel Opinion Avengers Comedy Central First Look Star Trek Sneak Peek spain Disney Plus Tumblr Epix dramedy dceu directors television cartoon Thanksgiving El Rey toy story crime thriller romantic comedy nature Peacock Year in Review Vudu YouTube Red The Purge Warner Bros. Fox News Cosplay Mudbound hispanic Marvel game of thrones Reality supernatural cinemax Christmas scary movies zombies BBC America Chilling Adventures of Sabrina mockumentary Showtime Ghostbusters NYCC Spectrum Originals halloween ghosts free movies Country Discovery Channel psycho ITV Amazon Studios Apple TV Plus RT21 Martial Arts docudrama E! christmas movies Pirates Watching Series kids TruTV Marvel Television vampires Esquire adventure Calendar war Certified Fresh CMT Winter TV Schedule YouTube Premium Quiz Netflix adaptation Musicals animated Pride Month Summer IFC Cartoon Network Rocketman crime drama RT History justice league Election Disney disaster Sundance TV OneApp cults name the review Shudder Comic Book Family Rom-Com Ellie Kemper Crackle Mary Tyler Moore Reality Competition Creative Arts Emmys Apple TV+ reviews WarnerMedia TV renewals universal monsters TV Red Carpet theme song award winner HBO serial killer LGBT Universal ABC Family Travel Channel GLAAD franchise composers Music Turner FXX HBO Max Lifetime X-Men YouTube Grammys Rock foreign anthology Nat Geo