Californication, Yep, It Stinks

So here's how the premium channels get you: nudity. The first few episodes, they feature nudity until you're hooked and then they bog down into boring melodramas you could find on network or sub-network TV. Case in point: Californication on Showtime.

David Duchovny is Hank Moody, a writer in LA whose novel God Hates Us All was turned into a Tom Cruise/Katie Holmes vehicle called Crazy Little Thing Called Love. He hates LA, having grown up in New York, but hangs around because he pines after his long-term girlfriend, with whom he has a 12 year old daughter, who came with him to LA but then left him for a richer, more stable man, whose 16 year old daughter Hank screwed, albeit unaware of who she was, or her age, at the time. And of course, while he gets laid constantly in the post break-up period, he was always devoted to his LTGF when they were together. Because most guys can turn that shit on and off.

Wow, where to begin with the cliches here? Somehow I missed them all in the rush to see more nudity. And there was alot of it. But now there's none. And the shows are degenerating, rapidly. The last one was about dealing with his dad's death, "flashing back" in grainy footage--because digital technology didn't exist back then--to a point in time roughly a year, perhaps 6 months earlier, when his dad visited and Hank's relationship with his LTGF was imploding. Of course, the emotional hinge lies in the letter Hank received from his dad soon after, which he never opened until it was too late. And, somehow, his grief brings him closer to his ex-LTGF. And guess what was in the letter? Yep, more cliches!!

Anyway, watching a few minutes of this will give you a good idea of what I'm talking about it...the awesomest is Hank's "beat writer legit" look on the set of the movie, just in case you were curious about who in the shot still had his credibility.

The only thing the episode has going for it is a guest spot from Judy Greer, who is totally awesome. (She is making the rounds of guest spots, and had a good one in Always Sunny) As Kitty on Arrested Development, she was always showing her boobs, but now she's playing a hooker on Showtime, so you totally can't see them.


dave said...

I don't know what you're talking about, Aaron. I find this to be a really accurate portrayal of the life of most writers. Just the other night, me and Matt and Dan were hanging out at the neo-contemporary lounge where we hang out, and we got talking to these young kickboxing instructor/supermodels, who immediately wanted to have weird sex with us while doing whip-its and belly shots of absinthe, then, after we had had a lot of close-up but still dimly lit and R-rated sex, with a lot of fake boob close-ups, we all made sardonic, world weary remarks and ambled off into the sunset to pursue the loves of our lives, and to dispense the occasional bon mot word of wisdom, like the beat lit Johnny Appleseed social commentators that we are. You see, that's what writing is all about, man. Now get in the Porsche and let's get out to happy hour.

dave said...

Two things I forgot to mention in my last comment: Judy Greer is always awesome. Somebody should give her a show that doesn't suck. And if you steal the name for your show from a bad Chili Peppers song (or any Chili Peppers song, post-Mother's Milk, when the Aerosmith Effect -- ratio of sucking is in direct proportion to ratio of success -- was in full effect), it really shows a lack of imagination that kind of dooms you from the start. I guess we shouldn't be surprised by all the cliches when the title itself is both shitty, overworn, cliched, and cribbed from a shitty album.

aaron said...

And his agent's sexy, Suicide Girl assistant is nicknamed "Dani California" and her subplot is ripped right out of "Secretary" so, that's kind of a meta-portrayal of a writer's life, in that they steal things and usually make them worse.

Judy Greer is awsome not in the least because she can look unattractive without adding a weird nose or 20 pounds, though I will add that most Hollywood starlets would look sexier if they added 20 pounds.