Thursday, June 6, 2013

Arrested Development vs Eight is Enough

As I mentioned in a recent post, it was Willie Aames who became a movie star in a foreign country, starring in an Israeli nudie film.

So it may have been ironic that, on the Eight Is Enough reunion made-for-TV movie (1987), that it was Joanie who somehow became a French movie star.

They did that thing they tend to do on reunion shows----had all the characters be wildly successful. This was a problem for Eight is Enough because the cast was so big. One married a baseball player, one married a wealthy sheep rancher for some reason. They couldn't think of enough plausible ways for each of them to have done really well.

Joanie was married to French movie director with her half-French son, Jean-Pierre. Maybe she was supposed to be sort of a Jane Birkin with her Charlotte Gainsbourg-like child.

You look at Isabelle Huppert or Jeanne Moreau, then you look at Joanie from Eight is Enough. It would have been more plausible if they made her a star in a country not known for its movies.

And what happened to Ralph Macchio? What happened between the end of the series and the reunion that made them forget he ever existed? And, now that I think about it, why didn't Cousin Oliver ever get to visit any of the later incarnations of the Brady Bunch?


I bring all this up after watching the new Netflix-produced episodes of Arrested Development. It was the opposite of the other TV reunions. Everyone was worse. Even the sympathetic ones----I wondered if I misjudged Michael and George-Michael. Michael's devotion to his son was less endearing, George-Michael's attraction to his cousin seemed less innocuous and the cousin he was attracted to seemed a lot more screwed up. I don't think I'm giving anything away here.

It was like a TV reality show---one of the ones about rich people who don't deserve to be rich. Here, even the more pleasant ones have never accomplished anything.

It reminded me of the people who referred to Prince William as "Pugsly". Yes, he may have seemed fine when he was fifteen, but you think that's going to last? Look at his gene pool, look at the environment he grew up in. You don't think he'll end up just like the rest of his screwed up, inbred family?

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