Trying is Apple TV+'s first dedicated comedy, apparently, and rather good for what it is. What it is is something about a north London couple trying to adopt, and a refreshingly non-Richard Curtis London couple, for what's sure to be a global viewership, or as much as Apple TV+ can depend on a global viewership, which is frankly not yet much.
It's funny, genuinely, with some very good lines. Rafe Spall as Jason excels as one half of the trying couple, lugubrious and staunchly anti-intellectual, yet half-wise. Where it falls down, and certainly not with the actor, Esther Smith (Nikki), is in the tweeness of characterisation. In 2005 film critic Nathan Rabin coined, not entirely unkindly, the phrase "manic pixie dream girl" for a certain type of heroine, and Nikki's certainly that - dungarees, breezy kookiness, squirrels and rainbows.
Unfortunately, this all spills over into the adoption process, with Nikki constantly trying to better herself (reading Dostoevsky, attending lectures with three highlighter pens) rather than Just Being Herself. Which will win in the long run. I'm sorry, it's rather good, but it irritated, with its cliched (bad) books versus (good) carefree-beach vibe, when there's no quandary. It's not a zero-sum game.Euan Ferguson, The Guardian, 10th May 2020
Super charming adoption comedy is an instant Apple TV+ delight.Steve Greene, IndieWire, 1st May 2020