Drop Dead Diva

When I saw the ad for this show on Hulu, it looked so schlocky and awful I couldn’t resist. And now various cable channels are plugging the hell out of the Season 2 premiere, guest starring—and this should be a red flag—Paul Abdul.

 The show opens with a blond bombshell nervously preparing for her big new job – as a prize model on The Price is Right. I have to admit that’s pretty funny. Her perky self-doubt is reminiscent of Elle Woods. In a parallel story with no immediately obvious connection, an ugly-by-television-standards woman is getting chewed out by her bitchy boss. Her co-worked, played by Margaret Cho, hits us over the head with some exposition.

In the show’s first five minutes both characters are unexpectedly killed and we’re vaulted into a bright white afterlife processing office, where a Scott Baio look-alike informs the blond-whose name I still haven’t been able to catch by this point-that she is completely neutral on the good/evil scale. The absence of good or evil, in this universe, is shallowness. The hot blond is shallow. He had to look that up in a database. She pushes a button on his keyboard and is beamed up into a stream of light, then wakes up in a hospital bed in the body of the unattractive character. Her name is Jane. I got that one. Plain Jane, couldn’t be more obvious.

There are too many stereotypes at work here to get through the pilot. I made it to minute 14. If you’re going to make a show about the afterlife, you have to find something creative to do with it. Call Bryan Fuller for tips. Furthermore, haven’t we made it past the assumption that brains and beauty are mutually exclusive? Did we learn nothing from Legally Blonde? Television lawyers are another area that has been hunted to extinction. High pressure, high heels, blah, blah. The ONE area where this show chose to stray from the predictable is they made Margaret Cho not funny.  How has this show lived to see a second season?

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