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EDITORIAL: Army Times calls on Fox to give 'Enlisted' better time slot

Mar. 21, 2014 - 06:00AM   |  
The creators of 'Enlisted' have demonstrated a sincere effort to normalize America's view of troops.
The creators of 'Enlisted' have demonstrated a sincere effort to normalize America's view of troops. (Fox)
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The Fox network’s new military comedy, “Enlisted,” appears to have hit its stride, but stagnant ratings after the show’s disappointing pilot episode threaten to torpedo its chances of being picked up for a second season.

That would be unfortunate. The show’s creators have demonstrated a sincere effort to normalize America’s view of its service members. In doing so, they’re forging a better, broader understanding of military life and its most challenging aspects, including difficult topics such as post-traumatic stress.

That’s all too rare in popular culture — which makes such endeavors all the more valuable.

“Enlisted” chronicles the goofball antics of three brothers assigned to a “rear D” unit at a fictional Army post in Florida. “M*A*S*H” it is not, though there is at least one important similarity between the two: Both suffered from a low-performing initial run. And things turned out OK for “M*A*S*H.”

Yes, the “Enlisted” pilot was poorly executed. But the show has come a very long way since then. The writers have doubled down on their commitment to accuracy and relevant jokes.

Frankly, it’s hard not to root for these TV troops.

Now it’s Fox’s turn to step up. “Enlisted” airs at a dreadful time: 9 p.m. Fridays. If the show is to survive, it must have better visibility. Fox can — and should — make that happen immediately.

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