Saturday, September 27, 2008

Pushing Daisies

Saturday, September 27, 2008

I remember seeing the commercials last year for the season premier of Pushing Daisies and thinking it looked pretty cool. I never got around to watching it then, and now I keep hearing how good it is and seeing it on various facebook friends' favorite shows list. It's won something like 6 emmys, right? I figure I should give it a try.

Turns out I'm pretty glad I started watching the show. It's like if Dr. Seuss wrote a fairytale that Tim Burton filmed. The show has a narrator (which would normally annoy the shit out of me, but its kind of essentail for a fairytale)who tells the story of Ned, the pie maker, (Lee Pace) who has the power to bring dead people back to life by touching them just once, but the second time he touches someone they are dead for good. The show explains it as "first touch: life, Second touch: dead forever." However, he soon learns by default (resurrecting his mother and killing the neighbor) that if he attempts to keep someone alive longer than a minute another person must die to... you know preserve the natural balance of the universe. As an adult Ned grows up a solitary individual who makes his pies and keeps to himself, until he gets a job resurrecting people who were murdered to find out who the killer was so he can collect the reward money.

Ned's partner in (solving) crime is Emerson Cod(Chi McBride) the only other live person that knows his secret. Emerson is a detective and their "business" of solving murders was his idea.I'm not really sure what his draw is in the show. I don't really feel any connection with him myself, or that he has one with Ned. I guess maybe his character isn't meant to have much depth.

As a child Ned was in love with his neighbor Charlotte "Chuck" Charles(Anna Friel) . They had their "first and only" kiss at their respective parents funeral (as it was chuck's father who died when Ned brought his own mother back to life)and didn't see each other until her's is the next murder he has to solve. However, once bringing her back to life he can't bring himself to kill her again, thus she joins the business and secures her role in the show. Chuck who grew up taking care of her two agoraphobic aunts (one of which is missing an eye due to the missuse of cat litter) entertains herself by raising bees to sell honey for the homeless and reading mass quantities of books. She is a sweet character. although not really that cute, a great love interest for Ned.

Really, besides my curiosity and it's good reception, the only reason I started watching this show is because I learned Kristin Chenoweth is a supporting character, named Olive Snook. I really just cannot resist watching any other endeavors from characters who were once on the West Wing. Kristin's character, Olive Snook is essentially good comedic relief, she explains that she used to think masturbation was chewing your food. She doesn't play a big part in the show yet, Her only connection with the group is that she works for Ned and happens to be head over heels in love with him. Her nuances are not in the least subtle as she paws Ned telling him "we all need to be touched." I hope that she becomes a larger part of the show in the future, and maybe some sort of bad guy? That would be interesting.

The cinematography in this show is fantastic and instantly striking. The colors are bright and bold. The show's look reminded me of Speed Racer a lot, and I happen to love that movie. The alliteration and the minimal background information on characters contributes to the fairytale theme. Normally I'm more interested in character development in a show, but the plot on this one has hooked me first. The score isn't lyric based like reality tv, it's all piano and strings setting the tone for each scene.

by and large this show is a first for it's genre and has earned another viewing from me. It's certainly not intellectually stimulating, but neither is Gossip Girls and I still love that show. I'll let you know how the first season goes.


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