Friday, February 8, 2008

Lipstick Jungle: Pilot

Synopsis: Three intelligent, powerful women work in high-class establishments in NYC and try to juggle their personal lives with business. And yes, this is from the same author as Sex and the City, so it should sound familiar. Nico works at Bonfire magazine and is strong, confident and overpowering, except she becomes bored with her husband (in one night?) and starts cheating on him. Wendy is a movie executive whose husband struggles to succeed in her shadow. And Victory is a falling star in the fashion world who starts dating a billionaire. And they all eat cupcakes.

What worked: Kim Raver's Nico was fantastic. Ditto Paul Blackthorne as Wendy's struggling husband and Julian Sands as Nico's boss. (Trivia alert: Blackthorne, Sands and Raver all starred on 24, with the men playing villains in different seasons.) The story lines moved well without feeling rushed or force (like Cashmere Mafia's premiere), and the characters were mostly believable. Nico's character had an amazing range of depth and is, I think, the reason the episode was good. And if you like seeing people eating cupcakes multiple times an hour, then this show is for you! All in all, I really enjoyed this episode a lot, when compared to Cashmere Mafia.

What didn't work: Parts of this episode felt more like Charmed, without the cheesy supernatural part. And I view Charmed as a whole to be a cheesy show, so take from that what you will. Brooke Shield's Wendy didn't quite feel right, but hopefully in future episodes, the character is written more to fit Shield's strengths. I wish there was more to indicate that Nico was tired of her husband before she met BoyToy, because it felt like (to me, anyways) like she quickly grew bored with her husband. Which could be a character trait to be explored, I don't know.

Victory's plot started out good, but somewhere between the car ride and the insane amount of flowers that NO girl would seriously enjoy because it would clutter the house, it felt more like comedic relief than anything useful. And finally, the color fade in the end. That transition effect is fine if it is your own personal camera, but please never fade from color to black and white on a national TV show - it looks cheap. Also, cupcakes?

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