The satirical novel Catch-22, Joseph Heller’s iconic cultural touchstone, has become so deeply ingrained in the lexicon that it’s its own phrase; the title of a Lost episode (miss you so much Lost); a movie; a play; an album (two, to be precise); a P!nk song; the name of a charity; a video game. And now, Catch-22 is a Hulu series starring George Clooney (who also directed two episodes), set to premiere on the streaming service next month.
“Based on the acclaimed Joseph Heller novel, Catch-22 follows the adventures and misadventures of a US air squadron in Italy in World War II,” Hulu says. Here, exclusively, is the trailer for the show, which looks like a rollicking good time:
So, what does the trailer tell us? Well, it tells us what the phrase catch-22 actually means within the first 20 seconds. It shows Clooney’s comedy chops in a rat-a-tat scene with an underling (more funny Clooney please). Kyle Chandler heads back to the small screen as yet another commanding figure (Colonel Cathcart) giving an inspirational speech as he tries to rally his troops (Coach is that you?). There’s some intense airplane warfare, a scene in which Hugh Laurie stumbles into a Nazi gathering, and plenty more to get you hooked. And honestly, who on this earth could say no to Clooney uttering the sentence, “So you’re saying he’s had his balls blown off? I wanna see it.”
Catch-22 also stars Christopher Abbott as Yossarian—doing a lot of excellent acting and heavy-lifting in the trailer—as well as former SNL cast member Jon Rudnitsky and many more. Per the official description:
Christopher Abbott is Yossarian, a bombardier, whose frantic obsession
every time he goes up on a mission is “to come down alive”. His odds
of success at such a simple aim keep getting worse, because Colonel
Cathcart (Kyle Chandler) keeps raising the number of missions the men
have to fly. More than the retreating Germans, the real enemy for
Yossarian and his rag-tag bunch of friends is the bureaucracy of the
military, inverting logic at every turn. The pinnacle of this is
Catch-22, a military by-law which states that if you fly your
missions, you’re crazy, and don’t have to fly them; all you have to do
is ask. But if you as not to, then you’re sane, and so you have to fly
them. George Clooney stars as the barking mad, parade-obsessed
Scheisskopf. Hugh Laurie is the mellow, slightly checked-out Major de
Coverley. Clooney directs the six-episode series, along with Grant
Heslov and Ellen Kuras.
Should you take May 17 off from work to binge all six episodes? Only you can decide that for yourself (but yeah, you probably should).