Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Ho hum, more quirkiness...

I was pretty certain, just judging by the commercials on CBC Radio (I get it streaming at work. Large parts of CBC North's programming is in Inuktuitit) that I wasn't going to like Rabbittown. It just sounded dumb and annoying.

Imagine my lack of shock then when Rabbittown turn out to be dumb and annoying.

I'm just so bored of this type of humour. Is this all we're capable of producing in Newfoundland anymore? Let's take some quirky Newfoundland characters, slap on broad accents and put them in odd situations. It was original when Cod on a Stick did it in the early 1970. When the Wonderful Grand Band did it on television in the early 80s it was still good. Hell, I'll even stretch it to CODCO in the early 90s. Well, at least until Andy Jones left. But it got real thin after The Gullages and Dooley Gardens. And unless Hatching, Matching and Dispatching has worked out some of its quirks, then all the controversy in the world won't get it more than six episodes this time around.

I know the people involved in Rabbittown are capable of better than this. I've interviewed a bunch of them when they were working on other stuff. They're smart, talented people. But it's like they all drink the Kool-Aid at some point when it comes to getting a TV show made. It's like they crack open the safe and use the same formula thinking it still has some magic left in it. But it's not so magic anymore.

Mary Walsh complained during HMD that people were upset with what they perceived as stereotyping of Newfoundlanders. I think I was more annoyed at the cliches. It's beginning to feel like all we can produce for television is:
A. Stuff for the CBC that must be
B. A comedy that is
C. Filled with quirky characters and wacky Newfoundland antics.

Or D. If worse comes to worse, a current affairs comedy show.

It's boring and frustrating. I really hope that Adriana Maggs and Sherry White are aspiring to be more than third rate Bernie Stapleton and Amy House knock-off material. Because that's what Rabbittown is.

I normally wish these productions well and hope they can work out the kinks. Because not enough production work is done in Newfoundland. But really, I want Maggs and White to make something good. So let's just kill this and move on, shall well?

I really hope that Above and Beyond, coming out later this year, is better than this. And that it proves that maybe we can produce something in this province other than the usual comedy.

Last 5 on iPod
1. Putnum County - Tom Waits (Nighthawks at the Diner
2. Speak the word - Tracy Chapman (Greatest Hits)
3. Ageless beauty - Stars (Set Yourself on Fire)
4. Backstreets - Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band (Live:1975-85)
5. If Venice is sinking - Spirit of the West (Faithlift)

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