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Happy Town 1.02 – I Came to Haplin for the Waters

Don't Let the Name Fool You. It sucks.

Grade: D

It got worse.

I didn’t think it was possible, but Happy Town *actually* was worse this week than last week. I’m going to go out on a limb and say that it is the worst scripted television show right now.

Then why am I still watching it? Well, first of all if I ever think about going into television writing I’ll know what not to do and secondly for shits and giggles. Cause there really isn’t anything like it on TV right now and judging by the ratings we’ll only have a few more weeks to suffer this miserable mystery.The plot of this week is, well… I’m not sure. There wasn’t anything terrible cohesive. In actuality, the pilot was split into two parts so we haven’t even gotten the part of the show where the creators found out their Frankenstein baby of a show gets to grace our TV screens for an extended period of time (hey, I’d feel real shitty about my show right now if ABC picked up Happy Town over it). The town is still suffering from the spastastic arm cutting off at the end of the last episode, which was both hilarious and ridiculous. Now, I can accept some inconceivable facets of the show in order to make the mythology work (I am a Whedon fan, after all) but the leaps and bounds of logic necessary to even digest Happy Town are problematic.

These writers should not be allowed to plague our TV screens. “I just like watching thaw fest evolve” and “probably cause he ran out of things to clap for” all happened in the first 2 minutes and were an insult to my ears. Read your script out loud. You might realize that a) no one talks like that and b) it’s not funny or moving. Actually, that might be the single biggest issue I have with Happy Town. The dialog is exceptionally expository to the point where the writers feel the need to tell the audience every last detail of their lives in a monologue. Not only is this an insult to my intelligence but it makes for stale dialog. Mrs. Haplin didn’t need to go over every detail of her life. I can infer events. Trust me, I don’t have an IQ of room temperature.

Maybe the cast can salvage the script? No… no they can’t. Amy Acker and Sam Neill are as exquisite as always, that’s about it. Too bad they were around 2% of the screen time during tonight’s episode.  Honestly. I’m hot and cold on Geoff Stults. Sometimes he can handle his roles extremely well, other times he falters. And the teenagers? Terrible. Literally some of the worst acting I’ve seen from someone my age. And Lauren German cannot carry mystery. Besides being unable to lift the script from the abyss it exists in, she even makes the most convincing lines seem forced. None of her phone calls are poorly written, yet German finds a way to make them all awkward and, frankly, terribly dull.

Also, Big Dave’s reveal? Sweet brah. How about you show us your hard evidence, writers of Happy Town. Oh, you don’t have any? Oh, you think we’ll just forget? No. That was dumb. I get that he’s not the smartest, but if he’s smart enough to set those-brothers-whose-name-I-forget-up, he should at least be fairly solid in what he’s getting into.

I have been ragging on Happy Town. But there’s a reason. It’s a show with (almost) no redeeming quality. It pushes mystery without any other reason than to push it. It’s like a car crash – terrible and people’s careers lives are being ruined, but I can’t look away.


One Response

  1. “…but I can’t look away.”

    Then STOP WATCHING IT!!! You come down on Happy Town but then don’t give the writers credit for making you want to come back the following week.
    Go watch a boring standard procedural like Law & Order or CSI where the bad guy is caught by the end of the hour.

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