Wednesday, June 13, 2012

QNBS: Pushing Daisies

I started the Quest for the Next Best Series to find a replacement for Chuck. Ten TV shows and eleven reviews later, I decided to watch Once Upon A Time. But having the opportunity to criticize anything in a justified manner is so addicting that I have decided to continue my Quest for the Next Best Series. I will not rename it because I don't have enough creativity to think of a new one.

I will adopt the original QNBS method for judging a show. 1. A friend recommends a TV show or I see an interesting review, or hear a sarcastic rant about it in the Internet. 2. I watch two episodes. 3. Write down what I think, Pros-Cons style.

I will add a one-liner (or maybe more) at the end of each QNBS review called The Verdict, which will serve as my verdict, my opinion, on whether you should or shouldn't watch the show.


Many series exist in TV world but today I will write about Pushing Daisies.

Plot: A pie-maker who can bring dead people back to life with a touch (but dead again after the second touch) chooses to not touch (for the 2nd time) his childhood sweetheart who was killed for golden monkeys, and lives with his choice's consequences. It's like Midas touch but with life.


1. Good writing. I put this as the show's number 1 Pro because I love witty statements and metaphors masked as smart-ass one-liners or meaningless babble. I loved the writing so much that each Pro will be listed with a line from the show's pilot episode, "Pie-lette" (a wordplay on Pilot, I guess).

I don;t know what Ned's pie place's name wordplays on, though.

2. "Dying is a good enough excuse as any to start living." Some shows use deaths as means to the end  but I liked that Pushing Daisies used deaths as means to a beginning. Promising plot.

Digby, the dog who has--not 9 but--2 lives, the most for any dog.

3. "No one has called me Chuck since you." Ned and Chuck's chemistry is wonderful. Lee Pace and Anna Friel work well on-screen as childhood sweethearts reunited by the other's murder. I also like that the writers didn't overplay (at least in the first episode) the whole I-can't-touch-you-because-you'll-be-dead spiel which made it romantic without being too cheesy, which the writers of The Big Bang Theory did perfectly with Leonard, Penny and Schroedinger's cat.

Chuck's alive!

4. "Listen to you, judgy judge." Ned and Emerson's chemistry was necessary to make the show effective. Yes, granted Lee Pace and Chi McBride are not as good as Danny Pudi and Donald Glover but they're not as worse as the guys from The Brothers Solomon.

The best duos are always a black guy and a white guy.

5. "This is pushing your luck. Well, luck pushed me first." It is a comedy--a little dark and sarcastic at that. I find things really funny if: (a) it is a reference to parodies something else, (b) it features deadpan rumor, (c) it's not supposed to be funny but it is, and (d) it is not trying too hard that it hurts my eyes to watch itPushing Daisies has the right amount of funny to be interesting.

6. "Didn't I kill you?" It has suspense, too--or at least the first episode has. I expect the whole reward thing that Ned and Emerson engage in (and I'm suspecting Chuck will join in, too) will generate enough
suspense for each episode.

7. "I wish I can give you an emotional Heimlich." It even has romance! Refer to Ned and Chuck's chemistry 'discussion' above.

Only under this circumstance does holding one's own hand look not pathetic but sweet.

8. "You can't just touch somebody and be done with it." The plot plus everything else I mentioned above is enough to make me interested. Interested enough to watch it again.

9. It has only 22 episodes! Although each episode lasted around 39 minutes long--a bit too long for my 21 minutes per show average--all the other Pros entertained me enough to not notice, or at least don't lose sleep over, the fact that it is 39 minutes long. Since it is a rule of the universe that all things I love must come to an end, Pushing Daisies shall end, too. Its end will come in season 2, episode 13. Knowing the end is foreseeable (and in Pushing Daisies' case, definite) is somewhat comforting.

10. For some reason, Pushing Daisies reminded me of Jeux d'enfants, and I love that movie.


None. I loved this show too much it only took one episode to inspire elicit ten Pros and no Con from me.

THE VERDICT: Pushing Daisies is promising enough that I can make an exception to my 21 minutes per episode rule...21 more times.

This screen cap is so pretty I just have to put it somewhere.


You may want to read other QNBS reviews:

Spartacus: Blood and Sand
Freaks and Geeks
Once Upon A Time
The Inbetweeners
Game of Thrones 2
Game of Thrones 1
The IT Crowd
Rizzoli & Isles
New Girl

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