Monday, April 11, 2011

What I’m Watching: Secret Diary of a Call Girl (Season Premiere)

Secret Diary of a Call Girl: Season 4, Episode 1 (B)

I’m so very happy to have Belle, one of television’s best characters, back, even if it’ sonly for one final eight-episode season. What’s somewhat less pleasant is the state of the show as compared to what it once was. Now I haven’t even come close to starting to turn my back on it; it’s just that change sometimes isn’t as delightful as it might otherwise be. That is to say that I greatly miss Bambi and the way things used to be. It’s nice to see Belle showing off a tour of her new place (“So much to tell you”), yet I didn’t mind a Belle of simpler, albeit still elegant, means. Ben was always a fantastic character, and its newfound alternation between cocky guy and hopeless stalker doesn’t suit him entirely well. There’s much more comedy in this episode than I remember from the show in the past, especially when it comes to Liam, who, to his credit, does seem like a strong new character. There a lot of cuts to imagined visuals that I don’t recall being there before, and they’re occasionally jarring. Fortunately, there are plenty of familiar elements that still work just as well as they always did. The characterization of Stephanie, most notably through the reveal of what was in her trunk, is still exceptionally well-done and over-the-top, and I think that her daughter could make for a good new Bambi prototype, albeit less self-confident and far more ignorant about the business. Ben making a pro and con chart on the wall was a fun scene, and I’m curious to know what becomes of him and Belle. The setup of Liam as Stephanie’s lawyer and then a client of Belle’s was smart, and the judge sex scene was pretty fabulous and hilarious. The show’s best element remains its usage of music, most specifically “Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps” in this episode. I’m looking forward to the remaining seven episodes; I’d just like to see the show find its groove once again before we really get to the end.

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