Friday, June 26, 2009

What I’m Watching: Samantha Who?

Samantha Who: Season 2, Episode 14 “The Rock Star” (C+)

This begins the summer burn-off of the remaining episodes of ABC’s cancelled comedy. The show started out with such promise, starring the likeable but not likeable Christina Applegate as freshly nice Samantha Newly, slowly recovering missing parts of her past and rectifying past wrongs with every person she’s offended. The show’s pilot was quirky and fun, and the first season was decent. This year, the show just didn’t have much left to offer, since Sam was at a point where she remembered enough that she should be able to function pretty well as a normal human being. Season two was fairly repetitive and not terribly funny. The slew of men parading in and out of Sam’s life has become a bit much – the show would be better to revisit Todd’s one-time proposal and emphasize that relationship. This episode is both a man-for-Sam and a gimmick one, where Sam meets a famous musician without knowing who he is, and then devolves and falls for him once she realizes everyone else is into him. We’ve seen it all before. Sam’s parents aren’t quite as entertaining as they used to be, and the rest of the supporting cast is not used terribly well. Both Melissa McCarthy and Jennifer Esposito are terrific actresses who need more to do than just act like overindulgent fans. Dena going on and on about how crazy she is serves as the episode’s sole truly positive note, and Andrea’s obsession with being Tony Dane’s girlfriend is getting tired. If I heard correctly, I also think this episode aired out of order, since it seemed to imply that Andrea still hadn’t met Tony, even though a previous episode clearly established that Tony was gay and Andrea was going along with it so that she could have a celebrity boyfriend and still sleep with whoever she wanted. “Samantha Who” needs a good, inventive episode to turn it around before it succumbs to the nether after its remaining six (?) episodes, or at least it needs to feature more of Todd and the rest of the supporting cast.

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