TV Review: “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” – Unexpected

Written by Michelle Young February 26, 2016

crazy ex-girlfriend

The quirky, ironic female-driven comedy has become a popular trend in the last few years with shows like “The Mindy Project” and “Jane the Virgin” formulating a specific combination of tone, wit, and irreverence that manage say a whole lot about life as a modern woman. “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” is the latest entry into the genre and it brings a whole lot to the table.

“Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” centers around Rebecca Bunch (Rachel Bloom), a former successful New York city lawyer who decided to relocate her entire life after watching a particularly existential butter commercial and realizing just how unfulfilled she is. While pondering this decision, she bumps into her old camp boyfriend Josh (Vincent Rodriquez III), who has decided to move back home to West Covina, CA. Rebecca, still pining for him after 10 years, impulsively decides to follow him.

“I did not move here because of Josh, because that would be crazy and I am not crazy.”

My initial thoughts about the series were not great. I looked at the title “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” and rolled my eyes, thinking that it was just a poor attempt at over-exuberant quirkiness without any real depth. Yet, I was pleasantly surprised. The first episode broke down any of my early misconceptions, but didn’t really exceed my expectations. I was worried that as much as they adamantly deny any over-exaggerated reliance on unimaginative tropes, they wouldn’t really transcend them. However, the show really does manage to back up its claim to irony (which is spelled out pretty clearly in the theme song) as Rebecca’s journey goes on. The more I watched, the better and better the show got.

Crazy Ex-Girlfriend

The character Rebecca is the absolute soul of “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend”. She isn’t perfect and that’s the point. She often makes choices that would qualify her as a ‘bad feminist’, but ultimately she is a real woman. No woman is perfect, and placing expectations of perfection upon her is just as problematic as telling them to “stay in kitchen”. Considering the overbearing pressure of a society that has dictated and limited women’s options since forever, the way she thinks and acts is somewhat justified. Rebecca’s awareness of how problematic her own actions and motivations is assuring, which makes her journey all the more satisfying. It also helps that Rachel Bloom is so fantastic and charming. Without her as the lead, I think Rebecca as a character would fall more towards insufferable than relatable.

“I know nothing about life. Truly nothing, like I make awful decisions, like really awful decisions.”

The best part of the show is by far the musical numbers. These came as an unexpected treat for me, because I had had no idea that “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” was even a musical. The songs are hilarious and are responsible for most of the show’s quirky feeling. My favourite number is “Sexy Getting Ready Song” from the pilot, which features a lot of Spank wearing and a rapper realizing how unfair beauty expectations and pressures are for women.

crazy ex-girlfriend

Going into it, I had no idea that underneath its sexist-trope title was a show this smart and funny. “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” is an unexpectedly great example of how women’s stories should be told on television. Let her be smart, let her be wrong, let her be “crazy”; let her be a human woman.

My Rating 8.5/10

crazy ex-girlfriend

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

About Michelle Young

Browse Archived Articles by

No Comments

There are currently no comments on TV Review: “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” – Unexpected. Perhaps you would like to add one of your own?

Leave a Comment