You’re supposed to be tickled by Only Murders in the Building, which is now in its third semi-triumphant season. The producers and costars (Steve Martin, Martin Short, Selena Gomez) want you to kick back and succumb to whatever…light-hearted chuckles, titters, the occasional guffaw.

Why have I never watched it? Because I knew I’d hate it.

One of my least favorite Woody Allen films is Manhattan Murder Mystery (’93), which is basically a faux-farcical black comedy about an older Manhattan couple (Allen, Diane Keaton) investigating the mysterious disappearance of a married neighbor in their Upper West Side apartment building. It was wittily written but felt labored and strained, and it wore me out within the first 40 minutes.

Plus I’ve never liked “amusing” murder-mysteries to begin with…sorry. And I always avoid anything Agatha Christie-ish. Killings + formula…later.

Which is why I’ve never given Only Murders in the Building so much as a single glance.

It’s about a wisecracking threesome — Charles (Martin), Oliver (Short) and Mabel (Gomez) — who reside in a swanky Upper West Side building and solve murders as a kind of…I don’t want to explain or even think about this crap. They run a true-crime podcast and need fresh murders, I suppose, for discussion material. It’s a really stupid premise.

The current season of Only Murders in the Building is focusing on the Broadway theatre milieu, and I wanted to sample Meryl Streep‘s performance. So last night and against my better judgment I gave it a try, but figured I should start with an introductory episode from season #1.

I felt instantly miserable. I was exhaling, groaning, truly hating my life. I didn’t feel tickled or tittered or tingled. I just sat there and asked myself “why am I watching this?”

I also wondered “why doesn’t Steve Martin look like he did when he co-hosted the Oscars with Alec Baldwin? (Answer: That was 13 years ago, and Martin is now 77.) And why is he wearing that awful little pork-pie hat? And why is the tone of the show so silly? And why does it feel so tepid and neutered, like it’s afraid to offend septugenarian viewers? And why have the whore critics praised it so? And why does the dialogue feel so tedious and lame? And why have they cast Michael Cyril Creighton as one of the building neighbors?”

I’ll be watching a couple of Streep episodes tonight or tomorrow, but my negative attitude isn’t going to change….just saying.