Tuesday, September 15, 2009
Void Of Course
For those not mourning, Hung has finished its first season, the first show in forever set in Detroit (Freaks and Geeks was a personal favorite as well) and we leave Ray Drecker with no job, no wife, no house -- "just a dick and a dream." Despite its crass title and subject matter, the show is oddly sweet, a fantastic tribute to the city I love. I knew I would never tear myself away from the screen from the opening narration: "Detroit, the headwaters of failure . . ." But what the show manages to capture is the great kindness and love in the city, the strange juxtaposition between language and meaning, the complexities of interpersonal relationships.
Raised in Texas where women routinely sugarcoat everything, I find the midwest refreshing. People are not your best friend one minute, a stranger the next. Much of the show struggles with loyalty even when it doesn't serve your best financial interest -- take Ray and his poet/pimp Tanya, a woman with a great soul, but not as effective of a pimp as say, Lenore, the shallow life actualizer (?) who can get him dates with "rich horny ladies." Also, the show deals well with money, something other television avoids because for most people, it's more taboo than sex. People who will tell you the most personal sex stories, are often hard-pressed to tell you how much money they have. When Ray counts out his money from the school pickle jar prize in the hardware store and finds out its a hundred dollars less than what the kids said, he finds he can't even buy part of a beam for his house. Even so, the foundation is set -- he may have a bunch of useless honey in his walls at the end of the season, but its the perfect metaphor -- the show is, as its essence, the sweetest thing on television.
Michelle's Spell of the Day
"The way to screw up somebody's life is to give them what they want." Patrick Swayze
Drinking cocktail suggestion: Jim Carroll, people!
Benedictions and Maledictions