Ubisoft is a video game company, so it was a little odd when It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia creator Rob McElhenney walked onstage at its E3 press conference and announced a new television show: Mythic Quest.
This isn’t the first time that Ubisoft has had television stars onstage. South Park’s Matt Stone and Trey Parker have appeared a few times to promote the various South Park role-playing games that Ubisoft have published. They were there to talk story and promote a game. McElhenney, on the other hand, appeared to just straight-up tell us about a comedy show that he’s made for the Apple TV Plus service in partnership with the games giant.
Mythic Quest is about a fictional game studio that makes one of the largest massively multiplayer RPGs on the planet (think World of Warcraft), and McElhenney explained that the plot is going to be centered on the launch of their newest expansion. You can see the potential for workplace humor, gentle ribbing of nerds, and the potential for big egos and drama.
The only real glimpse we got into the content of the show, though, was a little disappointing. We were shown McElhenney’s character Ian Grimm, creative director for the company that makes Mythic Quest, presenting an in-fiction advertisement that restated all of the information McElhenney just told us. He’s getting talking up as a powerhouse of design power, clearly full of ego off his massive game release.
Another character quipped that the ad was just for Grimm, not the new expansion. Then we cut to the same ad, but now Grimm is shirtless and ripped. That’s right. It is just an advertisement for this guy. That’s the joke. Based on the stream, laughter in the room was light.
I’m a little disappointed. After all, this is the creative team behind such ideas as “rum ham” and “Charlie work.” The expectations for the explosive comedy here, on my part at least, are huge. Where Sunny is one of the few shows that really does something special with shock and writing at the edge of acceptable discourse, this felt like all the edges had been buzzed off. It was a weak joke, there was only one of them, and it didn’t make me think that I need to watch 24 minutes of more of it.
On one hand, Mythic Quest has a chunk of the creative team from Sunny behind it, and two minutes at a video game conference is not the best place to land character-based jokes. On the other hand, this was one of the most disappointing comedy bits I have seen in a long time, and comedies about game development have never been the apex of the form. Grandma’s Boy and Code Monkeys aren’t exactly timeless classics.
I’m eagerly awaiting it, and I hope that it’s a lot funnier when it can stretch its wings. Mythic Quest will release at some point for Apple TV Plus.