When Shallow Has Depth

Posted on February 18, 2019


Life in the Boomer Lane has been, for the last couple years, obsessed with a TV series that, to her, is unique. The series is Schitt’s Creek, on POP TV (shoutout to all Canandians) and now streaming on Netflix. She has a ticket to see the cast live this month and so she has been thinking about this show even more than usual.

The premise is deceptively simple: Put the uber-wealthy, shallow, clueless Rose family into sudden dire financial straits, after their accountant cleans them out. Leave them with only their insane designer clothing, the mom’s extensive wig collection, and a forlorn town in the middle of nowhere that the dad bought as a joke gift for his son many years ago and promptly forgot. Advised to move there in order to get their lives together, they do just that, taking up residence in the seedy town motel.  The Rose’s are completely unprepared for what is to follow.

Vaguely imagine Seinfeld Meets Green Acres, but in which the characters have, beneath their self-absorbed facade, a real vulnerability.  Here’s where the clothing comes in. Clothing is another character in the show. It defines each family member. It is both adornment and armor. “Admire me but don’t get too close. Don’t ask me to be what terrifies me. I’m not sure I will survive.” And it’s that vulnerability that has LBL totally hooked into the show,  all the while she is shaking her head and laughing out loud at the Rose family, the citizens of Schitt’s Creek, and the wacky (but absurdly believable) circumstances that present themselves in each episode.

Eugene Levy (Mr Rose), of “Best in Show” fame (he starred in and co-wrote the film), produces the show with his real-life son, Daniel Levy (Rose son).  Catherine O’Hara, also of “Best in Show”, is Mrs Rose. Annie Murphy is the Rose daughter.  Daniel writes the show, and the dialogue could not be better. It’s smart (really, really smart).  No laugh track needed, here.  The actors, all gifted, do justice to the dialogue and are masters at body language to go along with it.  Just watching their mannerisms is a joy in itself.  They each nail whichever character they are. The townspeople provide the perfect backdrop for the family.

LBL will stop here. Please watch Schitt’s Creek.  And, if you haven’t seen “Best in Show,” watch that movie.  Then, when you have stopped laughing long enough to get to your laptop, let LBL know what you think.  She will be waiting, so that she can say, in the immortal words of Maui in Moana, “You’re welcome.”