I am a huge fan of the Paul Scheer/Rob Corddry style of parody that risen the past couple of years. Shows like Children’s Hospital, NTSF:SD:SVU, and Burning Love are all exceptional send up of their respective genres. Hulu saw the success of the series and commissioned the original series The Hotwives of Orlando with Paul Scheer serving as producer.
The series was created by the Upright Citizen’s Brigade’s Danielle Schneider who also plays Shauna Maducci the quintessential angry Italian trophy wife. The rest of the cast include Kristin Schaal (Flight of the Concords), Casey Wilson (Happy Endings), Angela Kinsey (The Office), and Tymberlee Hill (Curb Your Enthusiasm) as a bevy of different stereotypes from the Real Housewives franchise the show parodies.
The characters hit all the right notes for parody. The jealous wife, the gold digger, the sassy black woman, the christian, and the alcoholic. But while all the pieces are there a lot of the show falls short of being genuinely laugh-out-loud hilarious.
Perhaps the greatest character on the show is the on-the-nose editing and audio staff who nail the awful Bravo style right on the nose. However, the writing for the show fails to build anything from the characters presented in the show. An ill-advised recurring bit where all the girls freak out when asked to “Calm Down” wears thin within the first episode but is continued and said at least once in every single episode.
I understand that the real women on Real Housewives are very one note but parody can extrapolate on these caricatures already presented.
Don’t get me wrong, the show isn’t awful, I watched the whole thing in one sitting. There are a couple gems that arise throughout the series that truly had me reeling. Perhaps the best part of the show is the inclusion of revered character actor Stephen Tobolowsky as Tawny St. John’s (Wilson) oblivious and affable older husband, Phil. His denial that Tawny is sleeping with her personal trainer produces multiple belly laughs.
Another great moment comes in episode two during Danielle’s “Pimps and Ho’s” party when the girls get prostitution lessons and have a “whore off”. The episode ends on a slightly disturbing note which is when the show really thrives. Continuing with the disturbing, Kristin Schaal’s as Amanda is incredible as the boozy former child star who becomes the punching bag for her sister Crystal played by Angela Kinsey.
I think the concept for this show was great but they should have stuck to the 12-minute format that has worked so well for Children’s Hospital and Burning Love.
All in all, it’s something good to throw on if you are out of shows to marathon and don’t want to think too much.
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