“My generation has what’s called the Internet,” cast member Brandon T. Jackson responded patronizingly – almost as if he were speaking to an octagenarian who’d been dropped on her head while being wheeled to physical therapy.
“In order to reach Millennials, you can’t have this ‘fake talk.’ You have to make it where it speaks to my generation,” he continued. “This, to me, personally, speaks to how our generation sounds. Mixing old school with new school is genius the way it’s done.”
The journalist was one of many attending NBCU Summer Press Day, a sort of press-on-talent speed-dating day for NBCU summer programs – or, as one attending journalist described it, Pull-It-Out-Of-Your-Ass News Event.
Getting back to the language question: Exec producer Rob Cullen said, more diplomatically, that when star Craig Robinson’s character –he stars as a journeyman musician who gets a job as a music teacher at a middle school – is speaking with the children in the school “they’re speaking honestly, because they’re talking about Chicago and it’s an inner city…school. It’s very real there. That’s one aspect of the show, but Craig with the other teachers is much more adult.”
Robb and Mark Cullen insist they’re very happy with the summer launch NBC is giving the show, in part because of the post-America’s Got Talent time slot.
“We’re going to get noticed,” Mark Cullen added happily.
Robinson is the only original cast member on the series that took a long-ish and circuitous path to NBC’s primetime lineup.
A year after it was ordered to pilot, NBC finally gave it a six-episode order. That was back in January of 2014. Back then, Mark and Rob Cullen came on board as executive producers/showrunners and The Office developer/exec producer Greg Daniels, who oversaw the development and executive produced the pilot starring The Office regular, bowed out, as did the project’s writer, fellow Office alum Owen Ellickson, and Gabe Miller and Jonathan Green, who helped rewrite the pilot script.