TV Review – Santa Clarita Diet

Zombies!  Murder!  Mayhem!  Sitcom stupidity.

Video Game Rack Fighter here with a review of Netflix’s Santa Clarita Diet.  Meanwhile, enjoy your BQB free diet because that nerd will never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever write on this blog ever again, ever.

So, Netflix has taken the iZombie idea of a zombie who can still basically function as a human who speaks normally and Dexter, where the protagonist murders bad people, except here she does it for food.

Drew Barrymore and Timothy Olyphant star as suburban California realtors Joel and Sheila Hammond, just another boring couple living a quiet life with daughter Abby (Liv Hewson) on an idyllic cul-de-sac where all the houses look the same.

In the first episode, Sheila inexplicably dies and yet, does not die.  SPOILER ALERT: there’s a lot of vomit involved.

Sheila’s heart beat stops, she can be injured without being hurt, she loses control of her base desires and just wants to have sex with her previously sex deprived husband all the time.  Clearly, there’s been a big change.

Rather than, you know, consult a doctor, the family brings in a nerd, creepy next-door neighbor kid Eric (Skyler Gisondo).  He diagnoses Sheila as a zombie because, you know, he reads comic books and shit so apparently he’s an expert.  It’s all presented tongue in cheek and the audience is winked at to just go with it.

There are parts that are funny and parts that are just gross.  I feel sad for Timothy Olyphant.  I got so used to watching him play the tough cowboy in Justified that it seems depressing to watch him become the stereotypical pussy sitcom dad, completely impotent and unable to get any respect from his wife or kid and left to write sternly worded letters to the company that failed to design his toaster oven properly.

The main rule that all good writers must follow is, “Show, don’t tell.”  Viewers prefer to see things happen rather than be told that things happened and yet, at least in the first episode, we are told that things happened rather than shown that things happened.

I almost wondered if that might be a result of the episodes only being a half hour long.  With only a half hour, the show comes across as a zany sitcom.  With an hour, the characters could be developed more without the characters just blurting out the details of scenes we missed.

The verdict is still out on this show.  The first episode had its ups and downs but it was interesting enough to get me to come back for more.

STATUS: Shelf-worthy, and I hope BQB enjoys spooning with Leo McCoy in the Randomtown Motel because he will never be allowed to Netflix and chill with me in BQB HQ ever again.

Also, as a grammar issue, I think the show should be called, “The Santa Clarita Diet.”

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