When we meet Lost Angeles protagonist Will Carson, he’s in the bathroom leaving a voice mail for his New York ex while faux party revelers ring in the New Year. The festivities are being held at the LA apartment of a couple who are letting him sofa-crash, and as the woman confronts him on his desperate attempts to reunite, Jon Favreau‘s Mike Peters inevitably comes to mind. 

But there the similarities to Swingers end.

Will doesn’t seem to have any problems getting dates with pretty women. He even sleeps with his new roommate just after she’s offered him the available room. All deals are off when they wake the following morning, of course, and she comes to terms with the realization that it’s time to hit up craigslist to find someone to live with who she hasn’t had sex with.

Through a sampling of sporadic episodes on the LostAngeles.TV site (you can also catch the entirety of the series on Metacafe), we learn that New York is no longer Will’s lost love or his sentimental home. He’s moved on and is meeting women left and right, whether through the online ad for a room for rent or the perky young lady from the bar (who wakes up with him on his couch). 

Amidst the dating adventures there’s Sarah (Annie Little). The Rachel to his Ross, the ultimate in blond-WASP goodness, but her life in fact isn’t perfect, having recently suffered a breakup herself.

And this is where Lost Angeles more than likely will head: a series of near-misses will keep Will and Sarah a step-away from that elusive second date (the first found them playing tennis, modest indeed until Will’s ankle injury and Sarah’s arm-around-shoulder assistance off the court). 

Thus far, writer/director/creator Chris Blake can’t seem to reconcile verisimilitude with romantic comedy, instead proffering up something in between that’s never actually all that funny. And though Little is a more than competent leading lady, there’s too much overacting from the other female actors.

Star James C.Leary is a veteran of eight Buffy episodes and has thankfully lost any such teenybopper, pretty boy qualities he may have had then, almost approaching a bit of accessible everyman-dom, though not quite. The hill Leary has to climb, meanwhile – both in terms of finding a commanding presence in online video, and comedic acting itself – is for now a bit too steep. A comedian would have much better odds. 

Other than portraying Blake’s apparent fantasy of turning a potential roommate into an instant conquest, the writing is serviceable enough to be inconspicuous, but it’s mostly at the service of the plot. It comes to the point that all one’s left to do is wonder about the amorous outcome of Will and his lady of the week and ask the question “are they going to hook up or not?”

Check it out at LostAngeles.TV.

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