Are you looking to fill the Ted Lasso and/or Shrinking-shaped hole in your life on Apple TV Plus? There’s a new murder-mystery comedy coming to the service that’ll pique your interest if so.

Bad Monkey, a brand-new whodunit comedy from Bill Lawrence, who co-created the aforementioned Apple TV Plus shows and hit 2000s medical sitcom Scrubs, is that series. It’s not one Lawrence’s original ideas for a new TV show – it’s based Carl Hiaasen’s best-selling novel of the same name – but it nonetheless sounds like a riveting watch that’ll appeal to fans of awkward humor, which Ted Lasso and Shrinking – two of the best Apple TV Plus shows, by the way – have in abundance.

Okay, so what’s it about? Before I dive into that, here are some first-look images for the forthcoming show, which stars Vince Vaughn and is set to debut on one of the world’s best streaming services on August 14:

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For those of you who haven’t read Hiaasen’s book – I suspect that’ll be most of – here’s a brief plot summary, courtesy of an Apple press release: “Bad Monkey tells the story of Andrew Yancy (Vaughn) who has been bounced from the Miami Police department and is now a health inspector in the Keys. 

“But, after stumbling upon a case that begins with a human arm fished up by tourists, he realizes that if he can prove murder, he’ll be back in. He just needs to get past a trove of Floridian oddballs and one bad monkey.”

Sounds pretty compelling and humorous, right? Let’s just hope it sticks the landing and doesn’t become the latest series set in the murder mystery genre that fails to deliver a shocking, pleasing, or even funny end to enigma-laced narrative.

Joining Vaughn on the Bad Monkey cast roster are familiar names including Rob Delaney (Deadpool 2, Mission Impossible 7), Michelle Monaghan (Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, Gone Baby Gone), L. Scott Caldwell (Lost), Jodie Turner-Smith (Star Wars: The Acolyte, Queen & Slim), John Ortiz (Fast & Furious), and Zach Braff (Scrubs). Lawrence’s daughter Charlotte will make her acting debut in the show, too.

Lawrence and Vaughn are among the series’ executive producing team, which also includes Matt Tarses, Jeff Ingold, Marcos Siega, and Liza Latzer. Bad Monkey will debut with a two-episode premiere on August 14, with new episodes releasing weekly until the finale on October 9.

Lawrence and the (streaming) machine

Jason Sudeikis' Ted Lasso pointing at someone in Ted Lasso season 2

Ted Lasso was extremely popular with audiences. (Image credit: Apple TV Plus)

After his award-winning, near-decade stint working on Scrubs, it appeared that Lawrence’s best days in the industry were behind him. Indeed, aside from his six-year spell at the helm of the Courteney Cox-starring Cougar Town, which ran from 2009 to 2015, Lawrence’s post-Scrubs projects struggled to match the success of his first big TV hit.

Ted Lasso changed all of that. The heart-warming soccer comedy put Apple TV Plus on the streaming map, swept the board at many award ceremonies, and made big-name stars of its supporting cast, who have gone on to feature in everything from Marvel movies, summer blockbusters, and acclaimed holiday TV specials.

Buoyed by that unprecedented success, Lawrence’s star is also finally on the rise in Hollywood circles. Not only is the co-creator of Shrinking, another hit Apple comedy-drama that’ll be back for a second season, and sole showrunner of Bad Monkey, he’s also developing a new HBO comedy for Max that’ll star Steve Carell. Per The Hollywood Reporter, Lawrence will develop the unnamed, single-camera comedy alongside Tarses, which has been given a straight-to-order 10-episode run after an apparently intense bidding war between numerous streaming platforms.

If Bad Monkey and Lawrence’s new comedy prove to be winners for Apple TV Plus and Max, few TV creators, particularly in the streaming era, will have enjoyed a hot streak as this. Right now, it’s Lawrence’s world, and we’re simply living in it. 

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