Ken and Lorna Thompson live a nice normal life in a small British Town. They have a teenage son Dylan, who is very desperate to impress the popular Zoe at school, and a daughter, Rachel, who is returning from her gap year to start studying.
Rachel brings a huge surprise – a husband. Cuckoo is a hippie, strange and new age, American and incredibly sure that he has all the answers in the universe. Ken is horrified, but the eternally optimistic Lorna decides to embrace the situation.
Ken’s life quickly becomes a series of frustrations. He and Cuckoo just don’t see eye to eye, and since Rachel and Cuckoo are living with her parents, Ken feels trapped in his own home. Cuckoo doesn’t have a job, but he manages to buy a potato stand and plans to build his fortune from it. Nothing Ken does have any impact on Cuckoo, he is oblivious that his way of life is not acceptable to others. Rachel is very in love and does not understand where her father is coming from; can no one see how great her husband is?
Ken is very excited when he has the chance to become the local councillor. Cuckoo is excited for his father-in-law, and offers advice on politics, the interview, everything because he is an expert on this matter. Ken has a good interview, but Dylan is the one who ruins it for him – when Dylan kicks another teen in the balls, it turns out to be the son of the woman who needs to decide who will become the next councilor, and Ken is screwed over by his own son.
Ken and his family are off to see Lorna’s elderly father, who is still recovering from the death of his wife. Cuckoo manages to make Tony believe the house cat is the reincarnation of his wife, and soon they have a very happy Tony. However, when Ken accidentally kills the cat, everything turns around and he is once again in trouble.
Cuckoo manages to convince Lorna’s best friend, Connie that she needs to follow her dream of becoming a singer, the fact that she can’t sing doesn’t really matter. Lorna leaves Steve, her husband, and Cuckoo makes an enemy. Connie is now residing with the Thompsons, and her screeching is driving Ken nuts. Ken makes a plan to get Connie reconciled with her horrible husband, but it backfires and things don’t completely go as planned.
Rachel and Cuckoo are distraught to learn that the British government doesn’t seem to accept a nude Thai ceremony as an official marriage for some strange reason. They need to get married, or Cuckoo will be deported. Lorna is very excited because she gets to plan a wedding for her daughter, but Ken sees an opportunity to delete Cuckoo from his life, despite the fact that Cuckoo and Ken have been getting closer despite the American’s odd mannerisms. Will Ken be rid of Cuckoo once and for all? Can Steve be trusted? What will happen on the bachelor’s night?
I have to confess that I am not overly fond of British television. The humour over there is much different in general from the rest of the world, and since comedies are particularly focused on a specific audience, British comedy seems to be stranger than most.
Cuckoo was luckily very funny and enjoyable. It has a realistic premise – I think every father’s nightmare is to find out his daughter married a man so completely removed from her upbringing it is not even funny. Andy Samberg is so hilarious as the very hippy Cuckoo. He is everything reprehensible about current culture – so sure of himself, certain everyone feels exactly how he feels about things and has no apparent thought for anyone’s comfort but his own. Yet at the same time he comes across as an apparently decent (but strange) guy who loves his new wife and has a good heart underneath all the layers of scarves he so desperately loves.
I really laughed at Ken Thompson. He is so funny and such an old man, he just wants a nice normal existence without having to revert to madness, but he will if it is needed.
Recommendation: A solid show, entertaining and funny, something to watch if you need to cheer yourself up.