Privileged – “All That You Really, Really Want”

“All That You Really, Really Want”

September 23rd, 2008

If there is a single show that I would like to exist in a bubble this season, it is Privileged. For most new shows, I feel like there needs to be an online dialogue, a chance for viewers and critics alike to offer their opinions, and for ratings to demonstrate the show’s staying power and relative performance to other new shows. It’s one of the highlights of a new season, watching as shows either grow or fail to grow an audience as time goes on.

But I don’t want to know what people are thinking about Privileged, or how much its ratings fell this week as it faced increased competition, or how much of a non-impact it has been in internet circles and amongst CW viewers. All I know is that the show is smart, funny, charming, and is on its own accord and without much supervision quickly coming into its own identity week by week.

And I’d like to live in that bubble for forty minutes every week, if that’s okay with The CW.

The show just works: JoAnna Garcia is damn charming, her male suitors are varied and actually present a fairly successful challenge for Megan’s character, Lucy Hale continues to impress as young, conflicted Rose, and the end of episode turnaround by Sage to being able to support Rose in her scholastic struggles continues to strike that balance between caring sister and manipulative psychotic teenager.

The show is also doing a great job of reminding us why Megan is doing this: the whole discussions about job vs. career, writing vs. babysitting, dating vs. doting, it’s all very relevant to the development of this character we need to empathize with. It’s just a really smart slow build of character development, and between it and her handling of her younger sister it’s given Garcia plenty of range to show.

Yes, the dialogue can still be a bit too gregarious for its own good (I swear, I do mean to say it’s gregarious), but the show is smartly balancing this banter with some more realistic discussions. The various talks that Megan has with Rose represent the series’ strongest points, and Hale and Garcia are both bringing something very interesting to the table.

So, I really don’t have anything left to say: I don’t want to critique this show, I just want to watch the darn thing. I might stop in with some thoughts to remind you all that you should be watching this show (If I had a Myles Seal of Approval, it would get it), but as for reviews? I’ll stick to my bubble, thanks.

Cultural Observations

  • The show gets bonus points from me if it ends up breaking up Megan and Mr. Cassidy over the clear hypocricy of being against nepotism-based success and her dating her tutees’ headmeaster who is threatening to hold one of them back a grade. Even if it doesn’t, I can’t hold a grudge.
  • I can’t help but think of In Plain Sight’s own “Annoying sister who has sketchy relationship with Female Protagonist” every time I look at Lily, both in terms of appearance and their moderately annoying voices.
  • Mad props to Devindra Hardawar for having the guts to, in a very harsh room to anything of this nature, spreading the word about Privileged on the /Filmcast, which I later paid a visit to discuss the Emmy Awards. I only wish I had been on the show at that point to reinforce his point even further.
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