Platonic — Official Trailer | Apple TV+

The show also employs a similar tonal blend of naturalistic, dialogue-based comedy and slightly heightened physical gags. One fun ongoing bit is Will’s impulse to trash every rental scooter he passes on the sidewalk. And the most entertaining story arc involves a restaurant conglomerate that wants to sell Will’s beer at a Johnny Rockets-like chain called Johnny 66. Rogen and Byrne have a great time sending up these palaces of Boomer nostalgia, and we even get a cameo by Ted McGinley (on a roll after his hilarious turn in another recent Apple TV+ series, Shrinking) as the company’s cartoonishly oily founder and CEO, Johnny Rev. It’s not all silly fun, though. The episodes don’t ever float too far along without delivering some kind of emotional gut punch to bring us back down to Earth.


Rogan has never been the kind of actor who disappears into a role; his characters usually come across as some version of himself not too far from the real thing. That’s not a problem here. If anything, it makes for a more authentic performance. Meanwhile, Byrne is great at playing the kind of woman who seems like she might be uptight but is actually goofy and down for whatever. The two of them have just the right amount of chemistry to make you believe they’re friends without any romantic sparks. (There could have been more between Byrne and Macfarlane, though.) They get some terrific comic assistance from a cast of reliably funny supporting players, especially Carla Gallo as Sylvia’s mom friend Katie, Guy Branum as Charlie’s work confidant Stewart, Tre Hale as one of Will’s business partners, and Vinny Thomas as his beer-making protege.

Platonic doesn’t break any molds, but it’s nice to see another example of a breezy comedy that’s not afraid to let its characters be human and even unlikable at times. The question of whether men and women can be friends without romance getting in the way seems hopelessly outdated now. Of course they can. As this series suggests, men and women can also be awful, co-dependent, selfish friends who spread their destructive messes into everyone else’s lives. And weirdly, that feels like progress.


Platonic premieres May 24 on Apple TV+