Okay, so this episode wasn’t the same level of hands-down-amazing as last week’s, but it still blew the competition out of the water. Not that it’s easy to find Bunheads’ competition. It’s a show that stands out not just because of its quality but because there are simply no other shows quite like it. It fills the niche left gaping by the loss of Gilmore Girls – a show that’s just about people, without any of the high school drama, without any of the mysteries and secretiveness, and without any of the forced storylines that so frequently people teen shows these days. Its closest comparisons have to be to shows like MTV’s Awkward., but it seems increasingly likely that writer Amy Sherman has created her very own genre. And I love it.
But I got a little side-tracked there. This wasn’t as amazing as last week’s return from that interminable hiatus, but it was still great. It achieved that hard-to-come-by balance between packing a lot into 42 minutes and not feeling crowded. As is always the case with Amy Sherman’s efforts, the pace is fast and the action frequent. But I never felt like there was too much going on, or that any one aspect could easily have been forgone in exchange for some breathing room. In fact, it was enough to make me wonder if the only reason her characters talk so fast is so that they can fit all the fantastic material into the 42-minute format.
We branched out a little from ballet this week to take a closer look at the girls’ school. This was a welcome break and gave us a chance to stray away from the studio before we get too bored of it. No one could ever complain about opening a show’s universe up to the audience a little more. But with this new location Sherman runs the risk of turning her show into something more suited to The CW so, hopefully, this week’s trip over high school way was just a plot device to introduce us to Ginny’s new love interest and Sasha’s new nemesis, not an indication of things to come.
Though it might just be, as this week did seem to be the week of shaking things up. While Boo and Carl both ‘met the parents’ and, because of it, grew closer and more stable as a couple (I can’t love Carl enough as a character), everything else was a little more up in the air. Truly has been locked out of her store by the landlady (who is, incidentally, the sister from whom she ‘stole’ Hubble; played by Liza Weil, Scandal, Gilmore Girls, ER) and is, as a result, using Michelle’s house as a dress shop. Those two new students – brother and sister, Frankie (relative newcomer Niko Pipaj) and Cozette (Jeanine Mason, The Bling Ring) – promise to make things interesting in Paradise, giving Ginny someone to moon over and Sasha someone bizarrely accomplished to compete with. And, most drastic shake up of all, Sasha’s parents have split up for good. Her father is moving to San Jose with his boyfriend, and her mother is moving back to LA. Sasha is, so far, refusing to go with either of them and is determined to finish out high school in Paradise.
Will she convince Michelle to become her adoptive mother until she finishes school? It seems the most likely scenario, but only time will tell. – K
“There’s no whale in The Great Gatsby.”
“Are you joking? Where the hell is this stinker going if there’s no whale?”
– Sasha, Melanie
PS Someone as accomplished as Cozette is usually, in shows like this, incredibly smug and annoying, and this is no exception. But, damn. That girl can dance.