‘Camp’ Short on Dads, Laughs

The second episode of NBC’s “Camp” again swerved off the trail as it focused on the relationships of those working at the camp, rather than what camp is all about: the campers.

Camp Director Mackenzie Granger’s (soon to be) ex-husband shows up and his antics remind her of why they’re in the process of divorcing. Camp counselor Kip is blackmailed by a fellow female counselor who knows his secret and threatens to tell the whole camp. Meanwhile, camp counselor Robbie deals with his bitterness from growing up living with mother’s gambling addiction when she calls him up needing money to pay rent because she has gambled away her savings. 

Throughout the episode, one thing is blatantly missing: active fatherhood. The mother-child dynamic is explored over and over, but a strong father is yet to be seen. Oh wait, enter the gay dads again. We discover that they’ve inspired strong self-esteem in their daughter when she tells Granger’s son, Buzz, that she will flash him if he lets her go during a game of Capture the Flag. When he takes her up on her offer, she lets him know she would never actually do that because her dads have told her every day how wonderful she is.

“Camp” managed to make this episode more camp and less sex, but it still lacks in hilarity. It includes every basic plot line in a teenage drama series: competition, “romance” (aka hook-ups), and parental nuisances. It looks like NBC is up the creek without a paddle with this series.