It’s now officially May Sweeps (It started on Thursday evening), which means that all serial dramas are heading into their final storylines leading into their season finales. This means that they’re working overtime to make sure that everything is lined up perfectly, and that we as viewers are along for the ride. And, trust me, I understand why they do this. However, for the love of all things holy, quit it with the blatant metaphors and anvil-heavy examples.
I know that Gilmore Girls is heading into its final series of episodes in what could still potentially be its last season (More on this at some point in the coming weeks, methinks), but does it need to be designed entirely based on metaphorical situations to place its characters in. It began two weeks ago with the hay maze. You see, you can’t go around the maze, you have to confront it. Just like Lorelai and Luke need to confront their mistakes in the past, instead of just going around it. Because it’s faster that way. And then Rory and Logan were going into the maze, and there was two directions to go in, and they went in the same one. Get it? Because he’s totally on her side, because the maze told me so! I honestly felt fairly stupid watching it, as if the show didn’t feel that I, as a viewer, was capable of figuring it out without an anvil-like metaphor.
And then they did it again a week later! I know that even Amy Sherman-Palladino (Creator and former showrunner) used metaphors to get across her points, but it never felt so blatant. In this episode, Lorelai and Luke tried to reconnect. In the same episode, Lorelai’s car breaks. Now, she goes car shopping with Luke, but she doesn’t enjoy it or the cars she sees. You see, she doesn’t want a new car, she wants her OLD car. Just like she doesn’t want this new awkward Luke relationship, but rather her OLD banter-filled, dented relationship with the diner-owner. Do you get it? Because Luke is just like her car.
And yet, its popped up elsewhere as well.
Grey’s Anatomy this week contained a usual procedural construct of the week’s cases reflecting current storylines for the show’s main characters. You see it on House, you see it on ER, you see it all over the place. However, I don’t remember a time when it’s been so damn obvious. In this week’s episode, the head of the Hospital Board got a carnivorous fish up his penis (Long story), but the real story was that he had been sleeping with his assistant. In an obviously entirely unrelated at all development, George and Izzie try to get over the fact that they slept together (Which I still contend never happened in my own little world) and see if working together is still going to work. At a certain point, the assistant actually said to George “It’s never going to work, I don’t know why I ever got myself into this situation, I must remove myself from it, oh dear god don’t you get it I’m you in female assistant form, do something!” Or, well, something like that. The fact remains that it wasn’t nearly subtle enough. It’s late in the season, I know, but it feels like they’re rushing things through these cases instead of natural storyline development.
And yet, all of these are downright cryptic compared to the beauty found on Desperate Housewives last week (If you were wondering why I was posting this on Sunday, here’s your answer). I’ve long stopped watching the show on a regular basis, but I was bored and decided to have it on in the background. Apparently, Susan is engaged to a British guy named Ian, but Mike (American, of course) is most certainly still in love with her. Anywho, the show threw all three and Susan’s wedding planner into the mix, and all was wacky and zany as per usual until it came to cake tasting. There was two cakes: the classic American, and the British traditional. Do you get it?
But wait! The show could have left this metaphor out there, played it in a subtle fashion, it totally could have been worthwhile. But no! You see, then Mike and Ian sat down behind the cakes. Mike, of course, was now sitting behind the American. And Ian? The British. I was half expecting the bloody flags to unfurl from the ceiling. I hate being treated as if I’m incapable of getting the metaphor; Grey’s Anatomy handled a wedding cake metaphor in a much less blatant fashion, and I would hope that Desperate Housewives could do the same.
And yet, I doubt it. So, tonight, let’s see if Desperate Housewives is capable of building a storyline without embarrassing themselves with metaphors that elicit a big ol’ giant “duh” from their audience. I’m betting on no, and will watch something else instead.