‘Moonbase 8’ review: John C. Reilly stars in a pretty weightless Showtime comedy

Hatched up by the workforce behind the sketch comedy “Portlandia,” the mildly amusing conceit requires a trio of aspiring, typically inept astronauts auditioning for a spot on a Moon base by sequestering on their own in a mock area set up in Winslow, Arizona. (As a footnote, this is just about absolutely the most pop-tradition attention Winslow has acquired because the Eagles tune “Consider It Effortless.”)

The astronauts are played by John C. Reilly, Fred Armisen and Tim Heidecker (of “Tim and Eric Magnificent Present, Good Occupation!”), and they’re an eccentric bunch, down the quirky nicknames. Reilly’s Cap is evidently the most desperate of the trio thanks to problems at home, while Heidecker’s Rook is a devout Christian having difficulties with currently being separated from his wife and horde of children.

Irrespective of the notion that the base seeks to approximate the worries of getting on the Moon — dusting off the “urine recycling device,” for case in point, when there is a challenge with the h2o offer — a variety of persons drop in and out around the training course of the six episodes. That claimed, the series remains fairly claustrophobic, and typically uneventful, inspite of the occasional foray outside their protective bubble into the desert environs (carrying spacesuits, of system).

The inventive team’s sketch-comedy roots surface obvious in some of the sillier circumstances, which have the understated tone of a British comedy. Reilly does conjure the occasional humorous moment as a person so dense it truly is difficult to visualize him passing a driving exam, significantly a lot less qualifying for the place program and conference NASA’s needs.

Continue to, the entire work out feels as thin as the lunar atmosphere, as “Moonbase 8” joins a roster of collection loosely developed close to house exploration, which includes Netflix’s “Place Force” and “Away.” If which is an indication of a current infatuation with place vacation in the cultural zeitgeist, it simply contributes to a been-there, seen-that quality.

As modest methods for Tv set go, “Moonbase 8” is not the worst of that undistinguished bunch. But in spite of its Earth-certain moorings, it possesses the minimum perception of gravity.

“Moonbase 8” premieres Nov. 8 at 8 p.m. ET on Showtime.

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