Avenue 5 trailer screen shot

HBO has released the first trailer for its upcoming sci-fi comedy ‘Avenue 5’, which, based on this clip, is a mixture of ‘Star Trek’, ‘The Love Boat’, and ‘Titanic’.  Hugh Laurie stars as Ryan Clark, the charming but secretly cynical captain of this galactic cruise ship, charming his way through the throngs of wealthy passengers, spouting such trite bon mots as “Set your phasers to ‘Fun’!”  But the fun is shortlived when something goes horribly wrong below decks.

Per HBO:

Avenue 5 is a space tourism comedy set 40 years in the future when the solar system is everyone’s oyster. Hugh Laurie will star as the Captain, and with him in charge, nothing can go wrong.

The series was created by Armando Iannucci, who serves as writer and executive producer.  Iannucci and Laurie previously worked together on HBO’s acclaimed, award-winning series ‘Veep’.  Laurie’s Ryan Clark is described as “suave, outwardly confident, controlled, and personable” and “the man you want in charge of a crisis.”

The series also stars Josh Gad as Herman Judd, “the billionaire face and name behind Avenue 5… used to a life of luxury; his fortune was made from holiday resorts and he thinks he’s good at everything else. Terrible at science, he leaves that to the experts he employs to give him the answers he wants.”  Zach Woods portrays Matt Spencer.  At one time, he was an aspiring performer but now works as “head of customer relations. Despite being a nihilist, Matt is a nice guy who can’t wait to get to the end of his final cruise before promotion to a more senior role on Earth.”

Nikki Amuka-Bird plays Rav Mulcair, the head of Judd Mission Control on Earth. “Extremely intelligent, intense, and slightly odd, she is frustrated and exhausted by lack of control.”  Rebecca Front co-stars as Karen Kelly, a stowaway, who becomes the “voice of the passengers” as this crisis escalates.

Lenora Crichlow plays Billie McEvoy, second engineer, described as “young, outspoken, smart, career-focused, but exhausted by responsibility.”  Her greatest fear?  Dying in space.  Suzy Nakamura portrays Iris Kimura, “Judd’s right-hand-woman. Straight to the point, sharp and serious, Iris has a very particular sense of humor.”  She will be tasked with carrying out Captain Clark’s wishes, no matter how vague.

Finally, Ethan Phillips appears as Spike Martin, an elderly former astronaut, who is a “grizzled womanizer and heavy drinker who is also surprisingly good with kids.”  He claims to be the first Canadian on Mars, “which isn’t strictly true.”

‘Avenue 5’ swoops onto HBO in January.