It actually takes a lot of hard, focused work to make a TV show so bad it’s good. Think of “Barry.” The excellent HBO comedy is only getting better, but Bill Hader is a great (Emmy-winning) actor being asked to portray a bad one. Sure, the “SNL” veteran knows what a bad actor looks like — he was, after all, still part of the cast when Gerard Butler hosted — but he also knows what makes bad acting entertaining. “Barry” is filled with awful performances used toward brilliant comedy, whether it’s the tone deaf choices of his acting class or Barry trying to act (aka lie) in his day-to-day life.
Now, instead of just one element of the show being bad, imagine an entire series built from that same qualitative mentality. Putting all those pieces together is difficult, let alone finding a story to support them, but “What / If” does exactly that.