Monday, March 29, 2010

Cancelled too soon

Title: Pushing Daises, Seasons 1 & 2
Format: Netflix/Blu-Ray
Category: TV/Mystery/Quirky/Romantic Comedy
Rating: A

This show was canceled much too soon. Full of vibrant characters, exciting mysteries, and lots of great plot twists, Pushing Daisies deserved at least another one or two seasons, if only to resolve many of the unanswered questions and twisting plot lines.

Description (from Ned possesses the unique talent of being able to bring life to the dead merely by touching them. However, the person may remain alive only for one minute, or else someone else dies for them. A second touch will render the person dead again, unable to be revived. Through his connections with PI Emerson Cod, Ned revives his childhood sweetheart, Chuck. The trio, aided occasionally by Olive Snook, helps solve the mysteries of various murders, whose murderer is often surprising.

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That description barely does this series justice. Like many other shows that are canceled too soon, such as Firefly, this series' popularity came too late to save it, and now its fan-base must be satisfied with only two seasons (which is much better than Firefly, whose fans only have the first season). I am one of those fans who is guilty of getting into this show too late. When I first heard about it and saw the commercials, I thought it looked like a fun show, but it unfortunately interfered with another show I was watching. I became a fan after getting the first disc of Season 1 from Netflix. And then I was hooked.

What makes this series so wonderful is its characters. Each one is so different and so distinct that they stay with you, no matter how long their appearance in the show lasted. Ned the piemaker is by far my favorite character (and that's not just because it's the gorgeous Lee Pace), followed closely by his girlfriend Charlotte, a.k.a. Chuck. They're both such well-developed, interesting people who you can connect with on an emotional level. The other characters have varying levels of depth and connection, but each contributes a lot to the storyline. The two eccentric aunts, the singing waitress, and the gruff PI with a hidden heart of gold. All of these main characters, as well as the secondary characters, are the real attraction of this quirky mystery show.

The other two factors that drew me to this show were the dialogue and the setting. The conversations between Ned and Chuck were so deep, but they were also sweet and fun, so you were getting complex, meaningful, and sometimes philosophical ideas delivered in the form of flirting or pie metaphors. Also, I would give anything to live wherever this series took place. The bright and colorful people and houses, the pie-crust awning of The Pie Hole, the decorative shapes of the buildings, the old-fashioned mixed with the modern so perfectly. If only it really existed!

While this show is definitely not meant for kids (many of the corpses interviewed are rather gross and creepy), it is perfect for everyone else. A

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