Hipsters solve a mystery in the dryly funny ‘Search Party’

Alia Shawkat plays aimless Brooklynite Dory.

Three and a half stars

Search Party November 21-25, 11 p.m., TBS.

If the self-involved hipsters from Girls or Broad City got together to solve a mystery, it might look something like Search Party, an often hilariously deadpan comedy series from cult indie filmmakers Sarah-Violet Bliss and Charles Rogers. Like Bliss and Rogers’ excellent 2014 feature Fort Tilden, Search Party mercilessly skewers its narcissistic 20-something characters, while maintaining a level of sympathy for people who have no idea just how clueless and entitled they really are.

Alia Shawkat plays aimless Brooklynite Dory, who seizes on the disappearance of her college acquaintance Chantal as a way to give purpose to her increasingly empty life.

As she searches for clues, Dory becomes more and more obsessed with finding Chantal, even at the expense of her own safety and relationships. The extremely dry humor sometimes gets lost in the plot machinations, especially in the later episodes, and the show is best when it’s focused on the characters’ ridiculous, self-aggrandizing pursuits rather than solving a serious mystery. But TBS is airing the entire 10-episode season in a weeklong binge, which means the choppy plotting is easy to overlook as long as the characters remain painfully funny to watch—which they do, right up to the horrifying final laugh.

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