Thursday, March 17, 2011

Film Yap: Weeds Season Six

When Weeds first hit the air, it was a giant hit. Showtime was never a real competitor to HBO until this show and then Dexter added to the channel’s success. Then something happened. The original voices of those two shows started to fade. They became a bit too self-aware of what was popular with them and it stopped becoming organic.

Weeds could have used its season three finale as a solid end to the series, but now it has ran twice as long and it feels incredibly tired. At the end of last season, Shane killed Pilar with a crochet mallet. (It had to be a quirky weapon; this is Showtime.) So the Botwins are now on the run from the police and Nancy’s druglord husband.

Throughout the season they jump from town to town, get involved with misadventures with dark humor, and then continue to be miserable people. They have lost the redemption factor for Nancy and now that is spreading to the rest of them. It’s unfortunate for Weeds that Breaking Bad came out, because that plot really shows how you can morally test a main character in these circumstances and even when he’s unlikable still make him interesting. Nancy is playing the same manipulation game that it’s impossible to even care why she does anything.

There’s a point in the season when I thought there was hope and I feel stupid for that. They all come up with new identities and see this as a chance to start fresh. They even have a nice little cremation for their old ID cards. Then immediately after they all become involved in a stale QUIRKY Weeds subplot where they reacted just like they used to.

There will never be change on this show because it’s not about the story or characters. It’s just about keeping the show on the air. The family is on the run so it would make sense that not everybody would join in. Throughout the 13 episodes, most of it is spent with Silas wondering why he’s still here. That’s almost his entire season like plotline. He keeps trying to leave and then he stays for no reason. Same goes for Andy and especially for Doug, who is so unnecessary that God (aka the writers) saved his life for “a reason” and then never came up with a reason.

There was a two-episode run when I thought the show was back on its feet. They set up doom for the characters and everything came together early in the season. Most of it even made sense! (Except for Shane’s contrived lying to mothers in the park. Not bothering to explain that.) Stephen Falk wrote those two episodes and then it was all easily resolved and everyone was safe.

There are no stakes in this show anymore. Characters will never leave because they like the actors. It’s almost annoying how talented these actors are, because they all seemed trapped by this material. Plots will never go anywhere. Guns will be pointed, but they won’t be fired. If they are fired, it still doesn’t matter. Rumors have it that the seventh season will be the last, but I’ll believe it when I see it. It’s time to let go.

The DVD and Blu-Ray has a few extras on it. There’s a gag reel and a few featurettes including one that is literally called “What Do We Have Left to Say?”. There are a bunch of commentary tracks that are for fans only. Usually the commentary track with the showrunner is the most insightful but Jenji Kohan mostly just narrated what was happening. Oi.

Season: 2 Yaps

Extras: 2 Yaps

No comments:

Post a Comment