|Yes. You do look like a tampon ad.|
So, with almost no ado, have the latest installment in my series on self-torture:
CHARLIE’S ANGELS (ABC, Thursdays 8 EST)
Not to put too fine a point on it, but this was not a good show. Pretty much at all. It was a show that more raised the question, “Do they know it’s bad? Is this on purpose? Are you really saying that or are you being sarcastic?” If our generation can be defined as the one in which we forgot whether or not we were being sarcastic**, then this show is our poster child. Is it supposed to be funny? Because it was.
The Pilot’s plot (insofar as I can remember/understood it at the time): The three Angels (Angry Blonde, Smart Latina, and Sassy Black Girl) finish a job. Charlie thanks them. They decide to split up for the night. Walking back to her car, Smart Latina is blown up by a car bomb. Angry Blonde and Sassy Black Girl mourn her and start to investigate her death, only to find Minka Kelly (I could be witty, but she’s not remarkable in any way in this) was at the crime scene. Minka Kelly was a friend of Smart Latina’s. Smart Latina and Minka Kelly were going to take down a sex trafficker, but he killed Smart Latina, so it’s Minka Kelly’s job to see it through. The Angels decide that they have to help her, and Charlie’s disembodied voice agrees, so they do. A mission happens. It works. The sex trafficker is brought to justice and Minka Kelly becomes the next Angel.
|I straight up have no idea what happened in this scene.|
Folks, we have hit rock bottom.
And as strange as it seems, I don’t have many problems with the show as a feminist. Aside from the usual questions—“How is a woman that skinny punching a man that large? Does she have superpowers in her perfectly coiffed hair?” and “Why must you always fight crime in a skin-tight mini-dress? Isn’t it uncomfortable? Can’t everyone see your ladybits when you kick?” or even “Are all pretty women this boring?”—aside from these important queries, the show’s vague fetishization of its leads didn’t really bother me. It’s Charlie’s Angels. I could be more surprised. And while that doesn’t make it okay, it makes it bearable.
No, the main problems I had with this show had to do with the actual show. Simply put, it sucked.
|WHAT ARE YOU?|
Point the second: If your plot is dull and generic, the solution is not to add a party scene. Really. I feel this needs little explanation, but I can simply say that if I am having difficulty watching the show to begin with, adding a large party full of vaguely attractive people, chaos and some loud music, where our characters blend in entirely, is the best possible way to make me lose all shred of caring I had for the plot.
|I can actually feel myself getting stupider.|
Point the fourth and most important: I haven’t the foggiest idea if any of the prior points are important. And this bothers me. You see, I cannot tell if Charlie’s Angels was simply an intentionally campy remake that was a bit underdone, or took itself seriously and landed in the realm of camp and unrealistic wardrobe decisions on purpose. It's like a textbook case of everything that is wrong with network American television, and yet I can't shake the feeling that there's a joke I'm missing. It’s just that I have no idea if this is the joke or not. I don’t even know if there is a joke. I can’t tell if we’re being sarcastic or not.
I’m not sure which would be better.
|Are we being ironic? Because I can do that.|
*Semi-successfully. I got some good pages written, more than I would have otherwise, but not nearly as many as I wanted to write, and my brain feels like it’s made of soup.
**A friend’s theory, and one in which I’m rather starting to believe. We’ve come so far into the realm of intentional irony and sarcasm that we can no longer tell when we’re being earnest. It’s unnerving.