Monday, June 16, 2008

"Please tell me I didn't just hear that you had cyber sex with a fifteen-year-old deaf girl."

Do yourself a favor and watch Weeds.

If you have a subscription to the perpetually-in-second cable movie channel Showtime, you'll be able to catch the Season 4 premiere tonight. Speaking of that, if you haven't seen the first three seasons, it's probably available on On Demand.

You see, I am a DVD collector at heart - given that I can't watch too many movies over and over again (without the notable exceptions), this has led me to snatch up DVD seasons of TV shows I like as fast as a Warlord Dictator in an impoverished country would seize Unicef donations.

I have most of my favorite shows that are available - Arrested Development, Seinfeld, The Office, South Park, and The Simpsons get played nearly weekly - but occasionally I'll take a gamble and buy a season of a TV series if it's on sale for a ridiculous price. In fact, this is the very method by which I discovered Arrested Development.

My latest happy surprise is a dark comedy that enough people watch for there to be continued production and critical buzz, but not enough for you to get sick of people professing their love for it - not unlike Arrested before it got canceled.

I have only watched the first season (I purchased the first two seasons for a paltry $30 at Best Buy and have already 263 minutes of quality time to show for it), but here's the gist of the series: Nancy Botwin, expertly played by Mary-Louise Parker, finds herself struggling to support herself and her two sons' suburban California lifestyle after her husband suddenly dies from a heart attack. Her solution? Start selling pot in the upper-class community of Agrestic. What you get is a mix of stoner-comedy, soap opera-esque conflicts, and sharp satire of not only America's perception of Marijuana but the follies of upper class living. The story has hints of HBO's Big Love yet reminds me of Arrested in it's skewering of terrible people.

Faces you'll recognize include SNL alum Kevin Nealon - who may be my favorite part of the show ("It's a weed wonderland, Nancy. It's like Amsterdam only you don't have to visit the Anne Frank house and pretend to be all sad and shit.") as Botwin's stoner accountant and number one customer - Romany Malco of 40-Year-Old Virgin fame as the streetwise dealer Conrad, and Elizabeth Perkins as the utterly detestable (but howlingly funny) Cecilia - who you would know as the chick from Big.

Really, I can't say much more about the series without taking away from what I've seen, but it's one of those shows that unfortunately won't get it's due until it's prematurely canceled. With all the shit on TV lately, you'd think word of mouth could ensure shows like Weeds get more than critical praise.

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