Surviving Jack is an American single-camera television comedy series based on best-selling author Justin Halpern's autobiographical book I Suck at Girls and set in the 1990s, about a man becoming a dad, as his son is becoming a man, in a time before coming of age was something you could Google.
Jack Dunlevy (Christopher Meloni, True Blood, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit), ex-military and an oncologist, is a no-bull kind of guy. He sees little, if any, need to sugar-coat the truth. Up to this point, Jack's been the parent who's left for work early, come home late, eaten the big piece of chicken, yelled at his kids and gone to bed.
But after years of deftly raising and running the family, his wife, Joanne (Rachael Harris, Suits, New Girl, The Hangover), is starting law school, leaving Jack as a full-time parent for the very first time.
Jack's teenage son, Frankie (Connor Buckley, Deception), is just starting his freshman year in high school. Lanky, quick-witted, self-deprecating and not entirely sure of himself, all Frankie wants to do is fly under the radar.
But over the summer, he grew 10 inches, threw a no-hitter against a rival team and started to attract girls – all of which put him in some awkward situations – especially when the only base he's ever gotten to is on the field.
No matter how embarrassing the situations Frankie gets himself into are, Jack is there to pick up the pieces and lead his son to manhood...with the least gentle hand possible. Although Jack may be unorthodox and unfiltered, his intentions are always good. For better or for worse, he's Frankie's only resource now.
Even more confusing to Jack than Frankie's growing pains are those of his daughter, Rachel (Claudia Lee, Kick-Ass 2, Hart of Dixie), a gorgeous and super-smart 17-year-old high school junior.
Up until now, Rachel's done everything right. But no longer under the watchful eye of her mother, she has become a handful. Jack considers the mind of the teenage girl beyond his (or anyone's) comprehension – which Rachel will take full advantage of.
In addition to disciplining his own children, Jack must look out for Frankie's best friends: George (Kevin Hernandez, The Sitter), an overly confident Mexican-American with a big vocabulary; and Mikey (newcomer Tyler Foden), a tough kid from a broken home.
Only time will tell if Jack's blunt and unpredictable parenting style will keep his kids out of trouble, or if Joanne will have to put down the law books and step in to keep the family order. Until then, Jack's the dad the Dunlevy kids always wished they had – most of the time.
For someone who is used to taking care of people with cancer, Jack's got this... right?
Surviving Jack is produced by Doozer in association with Warner Bros. Television. Based on best-selling author Justin Halpern's book, I Suck at Girls, the series is co-created and written by Halpern ($#*! My Dad Says) and Patrick Schumacker ($#*! My Dad Says).
The series is executive-produced by Emmy Award nominee Bill Lawrence (Spin City, Scrubs, Cougar Town), Halpern, Schumacker and Jeff Ingold. Victor Nelli (Scrubs, The Bernie Mac Show) directed the pilot.
Although eight episodes were ordered, only seven aired in the USA. The eighth episode first aired in New Zealand on TV2.