Look, I really wanted to like "Emily's Reasons Why Not," which debuted on ABC last night. I was actually looking forward to the show.
It looked cute. And I like Heather Graham. So I was all cozy in my PJs with an evening cup of tea and my beautification supplies (nail file, cuticle cream, hand lotion), ready for some good chick TV.
I was disappointed. The acting was over the top at times, and while shows like "Scrubs" can pull off an exaggerated, over-acted style, "Emily's Reasons Why Not" fails in this respect. You can't have graphical subtitles, a narrator, flashback scenes and dream/thought sequences all in one 22-minute episode. That's a sure sign that you're trying too hard.
There were good parts. Some of Emily's inner monologue was punchy. ("From a mime!) The guy who just wants to cuddle? That TOTALLY happened to one of my girlfriends. And the eyelash as a theme that floated through the storyline? That almost reminded me of something obsessive, but cute, that would end up on a Single Lady's blog. The post would be titled, "The Eyelash," and it would start out whimsical enough, but ultimately end on a slightly negative, yet hopeful, note, like, "I wanted so badly for Him to be the right guy, for us to click, for my wish to come true. But life isn't always like that, people don't always hit it off and eyelashes aren't the best wish predictors. Maybe next time I'll rub a lamp or something."
But there are bad parts. (Graphical lists of reasons! Oh hell no.) And The Reasons? Eh. If you're going to almost personify a theme like "The Reasons," at least devote more than a minute to why The Reasons are being talked about like they're in the room, for crying out loud.
It's kind of like when you're getting dressed for a night out. You pose, fully dressed, in front of your bathroom mirror and pause. This is when you remove some bulky accessory — a wrist full of bangles, a long necklace that is just too much when paired with big beaded hoops, a belt that is too bestudded to be worn — smooth your hair and head out.
The producers should have stepped back from the mirror, removed two accessories before sending "Emily" out into the scary world that is network television. A narrator and a few flashbacks with a subtlety acted script, maybe? More actual acting, less Glitter Cho.
Real single women know that there is a fine line between understated fabulousness and being a made-up, big-haired, obnoxiously perfumed cliché.
I guess someone should tell Emily, huh?