Monday, February 22, 2016

What Do You Hate-Watch?

The last entry I wrote was about Sons of Anarchy and how I hate-watched seven seasons. I also happened to mention in that entry that I also hate-watch Girlfriends Guide to Divorce. All I got were messages saying, "Well, I didn't watch Sons, but I, too, hate-watch GG2D.

Why do so many of us hate it but hang in there and continue to watch. I barely like any of the characters, the plots are totally implausible, and the main character is the most unlikable, yet, I'm still hanging in. WHY?

I've discussed my thorough annoyance at all the Jewishness gone wrong in it. But I know I stuck with it in the beginning because it's extremely rare to have a Jewish family as the main characters. I wanted to relate. I wanted to feel like there was some hope for a Jewish family to be portrayed as something other than a caricature. Living in this era. I'm looking at you, The Goldbergs. Then it all went awry when they gave her the ultimate goyish brother and the clearly goyim parents. So then I had to focus on the story. Stories.

All the stories kind of suck. You have Phoebe who doesn't really seem to have kids. We know she does, because she was up in that school getting into a fight with the lady Svengali of her sordid modeling past. We never see the kids, she's taking up with different guys that we don't care about or understand why she's with them. She doesn't seem to work, yet, I thought in the first season, the ex basically made it like her gravy train was over. She sold all her jewelry to start a baby bling business and then just decided that wasn't going to be her passion. So how is she paying the bills? 

The Delia thing is weird. We get that she self-sabotages and she's all damaged. She cheated with her boss, no one's sure what she felt for him or not. It was all kind of gross. In the first season it didn't seem like she knew Abby all that well, then they're supposed to be BFF's by now and they've been fighting like they've known each other since kindergarten.

I sort of like Jo. I like Jo with the hot bakery guy, Scott. But Jo with the whole Frumpkis thing and the southern wife, and with the daughter- I can do without the whole scene. From what we were supposed to understand, he was married to Jo and this other woman at the same time. That, I thought, was illegal, last I checked. Then they move to Cali and want to be part of the bakery? That just would not happen. The story was just so contrived. It looked like in the finale tomorrow that Jo was remarrying Frumpkis. There is just no scenario where that works. It's annoying.

We finally can talk about Abby. The ONLY thing that has rang true in this whole season is her relationship with the doctor. He plays the perfect a-hole we have all encountered if we ever were single and dating, especially after a certain age. Hot and cold, on and off. Successful guy, seemingly normal, but harder to read than a foreign language. That scene when she went to his place after the prom- I felt her. I'd been there. Where he seemed like he liked her, but then bailed on the event, then made her feel like she was crazy for just showing up. Yup. Typical.

Other than that- she's a complete disaster, but not one you love to watch. She's a terrible role model to her kids- and as an aside, where are they?? Jake's been in Latvia, yet somehow, she had her house to herself for the entire weekend to allow the CW kids to party in her pool and attempt to write. The Becca thing was just stupid. She hadn't a clue that her one night stand with a wealthy, accomplished, famous black man could've resulted in her pregnancy? If she did sleep with Taye Diggs, and it could've been his, WHY would she go to the mostly previously unemployed Jake for help? It made no sense whatsoever. Becca didn't even look SLIGHTLY surprised that the baby was black. The writing just glossed over the whole Becca baby thing when that was the main focal point of the whole beginning of the season.

Abby never eats. They've now highlighted this. I don't want to body shame, but the actress herself is so thin that if you turn her sideways she looks like a zipper. I get that Abby is supposed to be Type A and they're illustrating that with the never eating, drinking Red Bull, and her running all over like a chicken with the head cut off. However, it's supposed to be sort of a comedy. So you know they aren't going to touch on any of the important things in any meaningful way. When the daughter tried to have a moment of understanding with her, after she took care of her while she was drunk- that whole thing was very real. But then they had her ruin it by just being her selfish, self-absorbed self, which, again, is just frustrating.

One of my friends had an issue with the fact the daughter was taking care of Abby while she was drunk. I actually didn't have an issue with that part of it. I think that probably can happen when there is a parent that is single, in their forties, dating, semi-famous, and going out a decent amount. I just don't understand if we're supposed to hate her because she's written like such an epic asshole. In the first season you could feel bad for her because her husband took up with a young, hot, actress and he was afflicted with Peter Pan Syndrome. I'm sure that's relatable for a lot of women. This season, she just became more like a vapid, whiny, cliche.

Basically, this whole show is a scripted version, called scripted, of mashed up characters from all the Real Housewives franchises. And because they're not real people, they're much easier to loathe.

I know you have suspend disbelief with a lot of scripted television shows, but I really think this is a problem with a lot of newer shows. They're all a victim of this new ten-shows-equal-a-season-itis. There is no time to flesh out characters and time in general is murky or too fast. They really play with continuity and not in a good way. It's been said that the ratings are higher for these shorter term shows. I think they're just less expensive. I also read somewhere that this mini-series format is because the viewing public has lost it's attention span. I disagree. I need a show that goes from Fall to Spring, where I can really dig in and get lost in the story. Those series are getting very far and few between.

With the exception of Sex and The City's first season of twelve episodes, every other season was at least eighteen. Eighteen is far cry from ten. Normal "full season" shows had/have 22-24 episodes a season. Now, most of these new ones, the cable ones, are all around ten to twelve. Maybe they eek out thirteen. There is just no way to tell a full story in ten or twelve episodes. Especially when a show is only thirty minutes like GIRLS, Togetherness, Happyish, etc. Just as we're getting into it, it's over for the season, not to return for another year or more. This is just not how I want to watch tv. Girlfriend's Guide has been thirteen a season, and it's an hour, but with so many characters, there was just no way to make them more than the shells they are. There are so many characters they shipped Jake off to Latvia, the brother off to Philly, and we haven't heard a peep from the brother's husband since the beginning of season two. We just have the girls and they're mostly terrible. I don't even know if there is way to redeem them.

However, I will hate-watch the whole finale on the treadmill on Wednesday morning. Although, it may be like last week where I stretched it out over days in favor of something much more entertaining- Vanderpump Rules.

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