Saturday, March 7, 2009

Dead like Dead Like Me

Oh, it’s like watching a relative who’s been sick for a while die a slow death. It’s not an elderly relative, but someone who got sick before reaching their full potential.
It’s like going to see a concert where your favorite band has reunited for one “final” tour, only to find out their aging bodies have betrayed them. Their stage antics, voices, and playing abilities have all betrayed their withering forms.
This is what I felt from start to finish watching the once genius and powerful Dead Like Me turn itself into the hospitalized straight to DVD movie, Dead Like Me: Life After Death.
There were moments when the familiar George Lass brought me back to the old Showtime series, but even her dry, deadpan performance couldn’t save the DVD. Dead Like Me was just never the same without Mandy Patinkin. Too much turnover in characters, then the actors who play those characters just seemed to turn this into a failed franchise.
Stylistically they decided to tell the story differently too. How in the world Dead Like Me should be associated with comic books is beyond my comprehension. Granted, my brain only stays moist with a daily dose of maple syrup, but I don’t get it.
If you’ve never seen the show, rent or buy the first season of Dead Like Me. After that you’re on your own. There are some tasty cupcake sprinkles left on the plate after that, but they are few and far between. Enjoy the delicious concept early on, but promise yourself to never be addicted. You’ll never be satisfied with a true fix. It’s like replacing butter with yogurt in your cake recipe. While it’s still cake, it’s just not as yummy.

Special note to Ellen Muth who plays George Lass…
You were brilliant in your roll as toilet seat girl. You are great playing a sarcastic and bitter dead girl who is plonked into the new job of reaper without ever having applied. Please, and I beg you… please don’t reprise this role anymore. You are too talented to be type cast into a roll that will never evolve. It seems as if producers and writers don’t care about this series. Don’t let that be your legacy.