I had a busy pilot week this week! Okay, so they’re all sort of similar, but that doesn’t matter.
TL;DR: Watch them all!
One Big Happy: Full points for being a fun pilot that had me literally laughing out loud. ♥♥♥♥♥/5
iZombie: I give it a 4 because I’m a cynic who thought Forever was going to be really different and was then disappointed – even Psych caved eventually – but it was an interesting, different and fun watch. ♥♥♥♥/5
Younger: As a fan of Jane By Design, it’s opposite-Jane, as a fan of The Devil Wears Prada it has the evil boss, and as a fan of Bunheads, it has Sutton Foster, so I’m in. If you’re a fan of none of these things, but are willing to buy the idea of a 40 year old pretending to be 26, then you should enjoy this cute comedy. ♥♥♥♥♥/5
One Big Happy
Lizzy (Elisha Cuthbert) is a lesbian who made a pact with her best friend Luke (Nick Zano) that if neither of them had kids by the time they got to 30, then they would make one together. The show begins with them buying a pregnancy test, and the whole story comes out when the cashier asks an innocent question; at least the exposition part is out of the way quickly and sort of organically.
The test is negative. So it’s completely fine that Luke goes out that night and meets a
nutty lovely British woman called Prudence (Kelly Brook) and instantly falls head over heels, yes?
You know where this is going. Look at the title. He falls in love, marries her to stop her being deported, Lizzy is actually pregnant, and they all live together.
Lizzy is uptight – in a cute way – Prudence is crazy – in a funny way – and Luke is the glue that holds them all together – in a necessary way.
Nothing to do with iPads, iPhones, or Apple in general. It’s just a reference to the main character being a zombie. Not the horrible kind like on The Walking Dead or Game of Thrones, but a kind that manages to get away with pretending to still be alive.
The genre is crime. The twist is the main character, (morgue worker Rose McIver) and the obvious comic book influence (though apparently it’s a loose adaptation, if you’re a fan of the comic of the same name) shown through the narration animation and “The Next Day” comic-like caption boxes.
Rahul Kohli is the boss/person who knows her secret and is fascinated with her in a purely how-is-this-happening-and-can-it-be-cured sense. And she’s a zombie!!!
Malcolm Goodwin is the requisite detective who gets paired with her and accepts the idea – eventually – that the reason she knows things about the victims because she’s psychic.
No, this isn’t Medium, Psych or The Mentalist. She isn’t actually psychic. She’s actually a zombie who has to eat brains to be able to keep up her “alive” facade, and every time she does that she gains some of their memories as well as some of their skills.
Rob Thomas is one of the creators whose name you may recognize from Veronica Mars. You may also notice other similarities in the voice over narration, including the fact that it has such narration.
Similarly to Jane by Design, this is the same concept but the other way round: a 40 year old woman decides the way to get a job is to pass herself off as a 26 year old. (Jane was about a 15 year old getting mistaken for a 25 year old. And was accidental rather than on purpose.)
Similarly to The Devil Wears Prada, the boss the newly 26 year old gets a job with has a reputation for being horrible. Yes, it is shown, no it isn’t anything over the top ridiculous like a sillier show.
It’s funny, it effectively introduces you to Liza (Sutton Foster), her daughter (Tessa Albertson), the best friend/sidekick who encourages her to do it in the first place (Debi Mazar), the evil boss (Miriam Shor) and the helpful really-26 coworker (Hilary Duff), and it even helps make the concept a little easier to believe by having a random 26 year old think that’s her age “give or take” with no prompting.
I find this setup more believable than Jane, though the same way Erica Dasher seemed short to be mistaken for 25, Sutton Foster seems tall to be 26. As a short 26 year old myself, I know height means nothing, but this is TV, where it can be controlled. Either Foster needed to be someone shorter or Hilary Duff needed to be someone taller; they look a little mother-daughter when they’re side by side. That said, I liked both of them in their parts and as far as complaints go, height is an unimportant one.