TV Review – “Dead Like Me: Season One”

Like dark humour? Look at this.

Cast and Crew

Ellen Muth as George

Callum Blue as Mason

Jasmine Guy as Roxy

Mandy Patinkin as Rube

Laura Harris as Daisy

Rebecca Gayheart as Betty

Created by Bryan Fuller

Complete information is
available from this
IMDB
page
.


Buy from: Amazon.com
or Amazon.ca

Past TV reviews can be found here.

Original Airdate


This season first aired in the summer of 2003.

Synopsis

George Lass, the main character of the show, dies in
the first
episode. She becomes recruited as a Grim Reaper,
allowing souls of
the dead to move on to wherever they need to go.
She’s a cranky and
profane young girl who spends most of her time with a
horny starlet
(Daisy), a hornier druggie (Mason), a crankier meter
maid (Roxy), and
a very contained boss (Rube.) This series first
aired on Showtime, so
you can imagine how profane it gets, but if that’s
not a problem for
you, pick it up.

High Point

“Vacation” did some nice work with all characters,
and Rube got a real
chance to shine.

Low Point

The clip show. Those just don’t do it for me.

The Review

The premise of this show is original enough,
but the
interactions of the characters certainly help out,
too. We see a
group that seems random start to form into a family
by the time the
season is out. It’s nice to see. I give it 5 out of
6.

The effects are minimal, and generally
glitter that doesn’t
need to be particularly refined, since it’s meant to
be ethereal. I
give it 5 out of 6.

The stories can get a little blatant in the
morals and
philosophies, but they’re always amusing. Mason and
Rube are great
from the start. Daisy starts out irritating, but
eventually starts to
work as a character. I give it 4 out of 6.

The acting is good. Mandy Patinkin always
rocks. The others
were little known actors chosen because they fit
their roles so well.
These people play their parts very naturally. Oh,
and
Firefly fans may want to know that Jewel
Staite guest stars
in the season finale. I give it 5 out of 6.

The emotional response is great when you’re
just going for
comedy. The drama isn’t bad, but it’s a bit heavy
handed, so it’s
less satisfying. I give it 5 out of 6.

The production was nice. The flashbacks
were a little too
bright, but the camera work (including the jump to
handheld cameras
once in a while) was nice, if uninventive. It was
lit like a regular
sitcom rather than like a show with subject matter
this dark, which is
something that I felt was a bit off. I give it 4 out
of 6.

Overall, it’s a good show, that didn’t
deserve to be
cancelled after the second season. MGM is shopping
other networks to
pick up season three, and I hope someone does. This
is better stuff
than much of what’s on the air now. I give it 5 out
of 6.

In total, Dead Like Me: Season One receives
33 out of 42.

11 replies on “TV Review – “Dead Like Me: Season One””

  1. Babbster says:

    Loved This Show
    The characters, the situations, the writing. Just excellent. Mandy Patinkin has never disappointed me and my glee when I saw him in the first episode bordered on the fanboyish. George bored me to tears for the first couple episodes (though I thought her character was well portrayed by Ellen Muth) but she started to grow on me quite a bit as the first season wore on to the point where I liked her quite a bit (believe it or not, I found her more annoying than Daisy who was indeed quite annoying at first).

    I wonder if people didn’t stick with the show simply because the characters started out so unlikeable. In any case, I highly recommend this series to just about anybody, genre fan or not. I think you have to watch a few episodes before you get into the rhythm – especially since there are mysteries that they simply don’t reveal and you have to get used to that – but once you do, you find it’s entertaining on multiple levels in terms of combining drama, comedy and fantasy. I’ll be buying the DVD set myself, despite seeing the season several times, just to show my support for the show. Family Guy’s resurrection has proven that nice DVD sales can make a big difference.

  2. Trekkie says:

    Great Show
    This has been a great show. A combination of irrevrent humor about death,
    about life, about families, about moving on, etc, etc, etc. But then it got
    cancelled and so did my subscription to Showtime. That was the only thing I
    watched on that channel.

    They had so much potential, but for some reason it just didn’t take off with a
    lot of people I guess, or Showtime had less expensive shows to make.

    • Daemonik says:

      Re: Great Show

      They had so much potential, but for some reason it just didn’t take off with a lot of people I guess, or Showtime had less expensive shows to make.

      Shows about lesbians are geneerally cheaper on many levels and guaranteed an audience, hench the L Word will have a long life on Showtime.

  3. Grounded says:

    Ok
    It was ok, although there were a couple of rehash episodes at the start. Clip shows do indeed irritate, but I think I read in a recent interview with the creator that they simply couldn’t afford to complete the season without them.

  4. Daemonik says:

    Profane

    This series first aired on Showtime, so you can imagine how profane it gets, but if that’s not a problem for you, pick it up.

    Dead Like Me wasn’t really chock full of profanity to me. It’s Profanity Level’s were fairly concurrent with what you can hear in daily conversation and they didn’t go for a lot of gratuitous nudity either.

    Deadwood, on HBO, had more profanity in it’s first episode than Dead Like Me had in an entire season.

    • fiziko says:

      Re: Profane

      Dead Like Me wasn’t really chock full of profanity to me.
      It’s Profanity Level’s were fairly concurrent with what
      you can hear in daily conversation and they didn’t go for
      a lot of gratuitous nudity either.

      Perhaps. I’m used to regular network TV, and I’m used to
      hanging around teachers, so there isn’t a lot of profanity
      in the daily conversation. It’s more than I’m used to,
      but certainly less than you’ll find in other offerings
      from Showtime and HBO.

      • y42 says:

        Re: Profane

        Dead Like Me wasn’t really chock full of profanity to me.
        It’s Profanity Level’s were fairly concurrent with what
        you can hear in daily conversation and they didn’t go for
        a lot of gratuitous nudity either.

        Perhaps. I’m used to regular network TV, and I’m used to
        hanging around teachers, so there isn’t a lot of profanity
        in the daily conversation. It’s more than I’m used to,
        but certainly less than you’ll find in other offerings
        from Showtime and HBO.

        It might be time for cultural reeducation ;-)

      • Dave says:

        Re: Profane

        Perhaps. I’m used to regular network TV, and I’m used to
        hanging around teachers, so there isn’t a lot of profanity
        in the daily conversation. It’s more than I’m used to,
        but certainly less than you’ll find in other offerings
        from Showtime and HBO.

        I take it you never really got into The Sopranos, then? :-)

        • fiziko says:

          Re: Profane

          I take it you never really got into The Sopranos,
          then? :-)

          No, but not because of the profanity. I don’t mind
          profane, but I do know some people who wouldn’t care for
          this type of dialogue, so I thought it would be worth
          mentioning in the review.

  5. jbrecken says:

    Cast List
    The cast listed above only has the reapers. That’s only about half the storyline of each episode. The other important characters are George’s family as they cope with loss, and to a lesser extent the staff at her day job as an office temp.

  6. rickyjames says:

    Good Ending
    If they had to cancel it, at least the gave it a decent burial. The final Season Two ep was a very nice Halloween series ender, I thought. And perhaps a necessary one – I don’t think there really wasn’t anywhere else for this series to go. Happy Time, the divorce, George in Love, Mason, Daisy, even Rube’s past – all been there done that. The two things they dared not do were get more specific about The Other Side or kill Reggie – both of which would have been logical extensions but not ones I’d enjoy seeing.

Comments are closed.