Burst Into Song edition, or, I get grumpy about TV

Hey, check out this sunset we had last night!

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Way to go, sky! High five!

Also, since we finally have some halfway decent light, here the yarn I spun from the blindingly pink roving the other day. I’m calling it Nuclear Neapolitan:

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This yarn is so bright I think I could use it as a weapon.

So, I’ve been kind of trying to get into the show Pushing Daisies. I want to like it because some of the same people who were involved in Wonderfalls are doing things with this show. For those who don’t know, Wonderfalls falls into the same category as Firefly – Brilliant but Cancelled by Fox. Because Fox ruins everything.

Anyway, I missed the first episode of Pushing Daisies but have caught all of the others that have been shown so far, and I have some serious problems with it. If you haven’t seen the show (or the last episode that aired yesterday) and want to remain unspoiled, read no further. Everyone else can hop over the fold with me.

The word I’ve seen used to described Pushing Daisies the most is “twee,” which is pretty apt. It tries to balance all of the cute with some darkness, but the problem is that the cute is so overbearing it leaves a bad taste in your mouth. It’s like eating some of that disgustingly sweet white frosting that is so over the top it makes your teeth hurt. Twee-osity aside, here are the other issues I have with the show:

1. The narrator is horrible. Apparently the guy who narrates the show is the same person who did the Harry Potter audiobooks, so me criticizing him is probably heresy, but oh well. The whole, “When the Piemaker was 7 years, 43 days, 16 hours, 21 minutes, and 17 seconds old…” routine kills a small part of my soul every time it starts.

2. I can’t even remember the character’s name, but the Piemaker guy’s magic ability of being able to resurrect someone, but then having to kill them within 60 seconds or else someone else dies, and oh yeah, he can’t ever touch the person he brought back to life again because then they’ll die permanently… like, what? Seriously, what were the writers thinking when they thought up that? At least in Wonderfalls, the magic ability was pretty simple – inanimate objects talk to Jaye. And I think the show handled it well enough where you could wonder if things were actually talking to her, or if she was just nuts. I’m willing to suspend disbelief for a movie or TV show, but all of the little rules that come along with the Piemaker’s ability just take me out of the show every time.

3. I really don’t like the character of Chuck at all. She grates on my nerves. I keep hoping the Piemaker will bump into her just to kill her off of the show.

4. Just because Kristen Chenowith is on a show does not mean she has to burst into song every other episode. Yes, she can sing. We all know that now. Please, please make her shut up. Her character is one of the the few I can tolerate on this show, but the minute she starts singing I want to change channels.

Which brings me to last night’s episode, and how not to do a pop culture reference. I mentioned They Might Be Giants a few posts ago, and Pushing Daisies made a reference to the TMBG song “Birdhouse in Your Soul.” They talked around it for a few moments on the show right before a commercial break, and I thought, “Well, okay, that’s kind of a clumsy shout-out, but still kind of cool.”

I figured that was the end of it, but after the commercial break was over, the show came back and the characters were singing the song in the car and it was awful. It was just a bigger version of my problem with the narrator or all of the rules regarding the bringing people back to life thing – it shoves me out of the show, and I stop thinking about the story and start thinking about how ridiculous this show really is.

About the only way I can handle singing on TV is how the Office does it. Every once in a while someone sings something, either as a joke (Jim singing “Lovefool”) or because Andy, who was a member of Here Comes Treble at Cornell, is involved. But when those moments happen, it doesn’t take me out of the show, mainly because whoever is singing sounds like a real person who is actually making an ass of themselves, most likely. Here’s the Office’s version of a big musical number:

It was just funny! It seemed completely in line with what Andy’s character would actually do, and therefore I wasn’t yanked out of my happy little TV fantasy world.

I’m just kind of disappointed in Pushing Daisies, because on paper, it seems like the sort of show I would be nuts about. But I only really like it when it goes dark – for example, I thought the best part of last night’s episode was when the crop duster slammed into the building. I completely did not expect it, and it was a welcome palate cleanser to all of the cutesy ‘the pigeon gets brought back to life!’ crap that was immediately preceding it. If they dialed back the cute by about 50%, limited the singing to either a musical episode (a la Buffy and Scrubs) or a few songs a season, and got rid of the stupid resurrection rules, I could really get into it. As is, it kind of falls into the category of “if nothing else is one, I’ll watch it.”

I’ve also found myself watching Dirty Sexy Money on Wednesdays, too. Hey, Donald Sutherland and Peter Krause are on it! If I’m going to watch fluff, I’ll watch Donald Sutherland-fortified fluff anytime. Anyway, that show is pretty fun. At least it doesn’t grate on my nerves the way Pushing Daisies does. Last night’s episode featured singing, too, but it was done in a way where the character who was singing was completely trashed and making a public spectacle of themself, so that was okay.

I think Scrubs comes back on tonight, so we’ll see if they continue the suckitude that was last season or get back to actually being funny. Honestly, they just need to give Janitor and Kelso their own spin-off and I’d be happy.

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6 thoughts on “Burst Into Song edition, or, I get grumpy about TV”

  1. Try “Dead Like Me”. It is wayyy darker and the same guy who is doing “Pushing Daisies” did that. It was only on for two seasons and I was addicted to it! You can see more here: http://www.deadlikeme.tv/

    I avoid network TV anymore. I got tired of liking a show and having it canceled after two weeks. At least on cable, they show the whole season.

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  2. Love the sky and the yarn! Funny, I saw the first episode and none of the rest šŸ˜€ I completely agree, too much cute. The thing that got me was all the coincidences. I just couldn’t handle that everything in the whole wide world was lined up in this guys favor. Nothing ever went wrong.

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  3. I totally agree with the Donald Sutherland fortified fluff. I’ve been watching that too. I haven’t made anything with my homespun yet, but I’m thinking about a couple of hats. We’ll see. I’ve got things on the list for Christmas, and a aht for me isn’t in the queue. I just added kilt hose for Andrew, because that’s his big shebang Christmas gift–the klt not the hose. Though I do hope he appreciates the hose. He’s been saying for years that he’d like to have a kilt (since his brother’s Scottish-inspired wedding) and he’s finally getting one. It remains to be seen whether it gets here for Christmas or his birthday mid-January.

    I digress. I saw the previews for pushing dasies, and thought 6 Feet Under and thought I may like the show but it has the potential to get really, really strange.

    I’m thinking I’m set on buying the S10 DT wheel. It’ll be my Christmas present. I got some cards last night. Andrew’s just waiting for me to tell him the specifics on what I want. If I order from Kim there’s no shipping and she’ll give me a discount because I’ve been renting from her, so I think I’ll send Andrew over with the list this week. I hear the S10 DTs are in high demand and they’re close to being back ordered for a month or so. I can’t wait!

    I just forgot I’m roasting pumpkin and making pumpkin butter upstairs. I cut up one giant pumpkin, and I’m feelign daunted by the idea of processing them all. I can pretty much guarantee that they’ll end up in the compost heap, because I’m out of freezer space and I don’t have the time to can it all. It makes great soup though, so maybe just one more pumpkin…

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  4. Your sky was really beautiful! And your handspun should come with a do-not-look-directly-at warning. Very bright. Very beautiful.

    I’m really liking Pushing Daisies, but I have a high tolerance for cutesy stuff. It’s just one of those shows that either grab you, or they don’t, I guess.

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