Alia Shawkat-Mike Showalter Comedy 'Search Party' Lands TBS Series Order

The dark comedy, from Michael Showalter, will premiere in 2016 and comes amid a reinvention for the cable network.
Courtesy of TBS

TBS' reinvention continues.

The Turner-owned cable network on Monday picked up to series Search Party, a comedy starring Arrested Development alum Alia Shawkat, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.

Set to debut in 2016, Search Party is a dark comedy about a group of four self-absorbed twenty-somethings who come together when a former college acquaintance mysteriously disappears. John Early, John Reynolds and Meredith Hagner co-star in the series, which is written and directed by Sarah-Violet Bliss and Charles Rogers (Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp, and overseen by Michael Showalter (Wet Hot American Summer). Tony Hernandez (Broad City, Inside Amy Schumer, Louie) and Lilly Burns (Broad City, Difficult People, Younger) will serve as executive producers alongside Showalter, Rogers and Bliss.

The comedy hails from Hernandez's Jax Media, which shot a pilot presentation before shopping the series. With the TBS pickup, Jax's roster of programming now includes Chris Rock's critically acclaimed film Top Five, and TV series including Comedy Central’s Broad City and Inside Amy Schumer, TV Land’s Younger and Bravo’s Odd Mom Out.

Search Party centers on Dory (Shawkat), a fragile, frustrated, life-long doormat who is not particularly proud of her impact on the world, especially since her greatest accomplishment to date is organizing clothes to be donated to Goodwill for her wealthy employer. Dory feels stuck in a stale and disconnected relationship with her boyfriend, Drew (Reynolds), a kind of clueless, complacent, spoon-fed doofus who just really loves Christmas. She also feels removed from her closest friends, Elliott (Early), a self-diagnosed narcissist who loves adding job titles to his designer-stylist-curator multi-hyphenate lifestyle, and Portia (Hagner), an actress always struggling to balance the challenging demands of chronic insecurity and pathological self-absorption.

Search Party opens with Dory learning that Chantal, a girl she barely knew in college, has gone missing. Despite having almost no personal connection to her, Dory becomes fixated on the mystery. Dory, Drew, Elliott and Portia are not crime solvers; they value brunch, parties and their own loud opinions. So when Dory drags them into a bumbling, perilous pursuit to find the missing girl, they soon learn the meaning of real danger and become entangled in a sinister plot that is more than their privileged Brooklyn lifestyles ever bargained for.

For TBS, Search Party comes as the network is reinventing itself under new topper Kevin Reilly with a push for edgier fare. Since Reilly's arrival, the network has cleaned house and dropped all of its existing live-action scripted fare including multi-cams Clipped, Men at Work, Sullivan & Son, Ground Floor and unscripted staple King of the Nerds. The cabler will have no returning live-action series next year. (Its lone returning series is animated import American Dad!). TBS' 2016 scripted roster will feature a lineup of rookies, with Search Party joining Rashida Jones-Steve Carell cop comedy Angie Tribeca, desert island entry Wrecked, The Detour (starring Jason Jones) and alien half-hour The Group.

Turner International's general entertainment networks will partner to present the series outside of North America. Bliss and Rogers are repped by ICM Partners, Mosaic and Jackoway Tyerman.

Watch the Search Party trailer, below.

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