Wednesday, February 8, 2017

The Small Screen: Santa Clarita Diet Season One

The new Netflix series Santa Clarita Diet is a dark comedy about Sheila (Drew Barrymore) and Joel (Timothy Olyphant) that is not only worthy of a binge, but it is an easy one long as you can stomach some of it. I won't get into the details of what exactly makes this show "dark" because it is more fun to find out on your own, but be warned that it does contain some rather graphic violence and extremely gross content despite being labeled a comedy.

The first season of the show is 10 episodes long and all of them run under 30 minutes, hence the easy binge claim I made earlier. If you find yourself wrapped up in this show, it is extremely conceivable you could comfortably sit through it in one less than 5 hour sitting, especially if you are a fan of either or both of the stars of the show. Drew Barrymore isn't always cast correctly for roles, because I find her acting to falter when she isn't allowed to utilize what makes her charming, but she fits in quite nicely in Santa Clarita Diet. Olyphant, unfortunately, is a bit less successful here and that hurts to admit because I am a huge fan of his work. When he does deliver the material correctly, he nails a lot of it and elicited plenty of laughter from me, but from time to time it is evident he isn't known for this style of comedy previous to this. It's nothing that ruins the show, but at least a part of me questions whether he was miscast here.

Created by Victor Fresco who previously worked on shows like My Name is Earl and Better Off Ted, with various directors filling in throughout the ten episodes starting with Ruben Fleischer who made Zombieland (this is a hint as to what direction the show goes that puts the "dark" in dark comedy), Santa Clarita Diet isn't the type of comedy that will split your sides with laughter throughout. It is consistently fun though, a series that will make you smile an awful lot. I think the best endorsement I can give Santa Clarita Diet is that there are no real low points during the season. There isn't a single failed episode or sequence that feels like a real let down, so while it never soars to any memorable highs, it also never misses an opportunity to entertain just enough to make you keep watching.

Season Grade: B-

No comments:

Post a Comment