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TV Series Review

It's hard to find good help these days.

Take Bob Belcher, proprietor of the greasy little spoon known as Bob's Burgers. His fry cook scratches herself in unfortunate places. His marketing whiz thinks savvy advertising is a bullhorn that makes disgusting noises. His counter help spreads rumors that Bob's using "beef" from the crematorium next door. "I'd fire all of you if I could," Bob says.

But because they're his children—and because they presumably work cheap—Bob and his meat-grinding wife, Linda, make do. I mean, you get what you pay for, right?

Where’s the Beef?

In the case of Bob's Burgers, which (thanks to Fox) is piped into your television free of charge each and every week, that's ever so true. Network execs consider this to be savory dinnertime entertainment. But that's only because Fox defines a "family show" only by whether it has a family in it, not by whether families should watch it. And this cartoon's take on the modern nuclear family is questionable—lean on lessons, loaded with questionable additives and may give you indigestion.

It's not completely without merit. Bob, our longsuffering restaurateur, digs his family in a mumbling, exasperated sort of way. Linda is devoted to her hubby in spite of his many faults, and she encourages him to pursue his short-order dreams no matter how many times he gets splashed with metaphorical fry oil. The Belcher children, for all their oddities, show flashes of near humanity. And episodes often conclude with a touchy-feely moment. In fact, as Bob’s actual burgers have grown ever-more questionable, the tone of the show has gotten, dare we say, sweeter?

But while it sometimes aims for the heart, its gags hit somewhere south of there. In other words, cleanly funny moments are as rare as tofu on Bob's lunch menu, never mind that the series is a two-time Emmy winner for Outstanding Animated Program (in 2014 and 2017). And while it's less objectionable than any one of Seth MacFarlane's slew of comedies (see: Family Guy), episodes are still filled with quips that give noxious nods to cannibalism, talking feces, bestiality and pedophilia, among other things.

Bob once asked Gene, his son, if he could please stop using his bullhorn to make farting noises at folks passing by the diner.

"There's a line between entertaining and annoying," Bob tells him.

"No!" Gene hollers. "That's a myth! " Which neatly sums up the philosophy, it would seem, of Bob's Burgers.

Positive Elements

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Additional Comments/Notes

Episode Reviews

Oct. 13, 2019: "Motor, She Boat"
Nov. 18, 2018: "I Bob Your Pardon"
Bob's Burgers: Mar 18 2018 "The Secret Ceramics Room of Secrets."
BobsBurgers: 12-7-2014
BobsBurgers: 1-23-2011
BobsBurgers: 1-9-2011



Readability Age Range



Voices of H. Jon Benjamin as Bob; John Roberts as Linda; Dan Mintz as Tina; Eugene Mirman as Gene; Kristen Schaal as Louise; Larry Murphy as Teddy and David Herman as Mr. Frond






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