Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Cape-Primetime Disappointment or Bad Episode

Over the last couple of years that I have made the transition from barfly to homebody. It happens to many of us, especially when we find that special somebody. There is nothing like replacing liver damage with radiation poisoning, especially when it's spent next to the one you love.

Since I have tied myself to the America's Favorite Pastime(suck it, football!), I have found that I get eager a few times a year. That time when we get to see what the creative minds of the network gods are going to unleash upon us for what is typically one to six episodes unless it gets picked up for tenure. I am speaking of pilot season. Those couple of weeks during the months of September and January the make or break the will-to-live for those Hollywood newcomers and the audience who choses to participate.

Two of the shows the collective being known as Mary and Steve just happened to watched last night one a pilot and one in it's third episode. Keep in mind, even though I say "collective being", it doesn't necessarily mean that I was anticipating both shows any more than the girlfriend was. I being the former comic book addict had been anticipating The Cape for the last month while Mary had been inching to see Being Human, a show in which I will keep my opinions to my self at the insistence of my better half.

As far as I can tell, The Cape is the story of a cop, Vince Faraday, who is presumed dead by the rest of the occupants of the DC-like fake metropolis of Palm City. With the help of a mysterious circus ringleader and his magical cape he takes on the alter ego of a comic book character his son reads about, known as The Cape(duh!). He fights a new criminal every week like a good masked avenger. From reading the Wikipedia entry , I have gathered that he is trying to clear his good name after being framed by a mysterious arch-nemesis known as Chess. while hiding his existence from his wife and son.

As you can tell from the title of this blog entry, I haven't yet developed a solid opinion of how I felt about The Cape. As much as I love the idea of having a show about a costumed crimefighter that is not based on an 80 year old comic, certain aspects about it didn't sit well with me. For one, the writing was pretty fucking horrible. I know I probably should have watched the first two episodes, but Mondays are typically reserved for NPH and Charlie Sheen, so I wasn't in-the-know as to the correct date of the series premiere. This is a new show though, and the first few episodes should be written and staged appropriately so that newcomers like myself have a better understanding of what's going on. I felt lost with most of the episode.

With a dark and dreary set design with a masked vigilante, any idiot can tell that the creators of the Cape are going for something of a Batman feel. But the name Gotham City inspires the image of a burg forever under the cloak of night and bad weather, like Seattle with less flannel. The name Palm City doesn't exactly conjure up the thought of crime ridden and sinister. In fact, all I can think about is a retirement community in Florida suburb with a name like Palm City. With a name like that, they should have considered naming the superhero The Shuffleboard. It's more fitting for the environment.

Despite the shitty writing and overall confusion I had with my first time watching the Cape, there were elements to it that will bring me back for more. Namely the appearance of Martin Klebba as Rollo, a co-star of limited height then I have much love for. The truth is you can produce the shittiest piece of cinema in the world, and I will still watch it if "little people" are involved. Call me an asshole, but there is something about dwarfism in the acting pool that brings a smile to my face, and I'm sure I'm not the only one. Through the mysterious-masked- man element and supervillains on top of that, and The Cape is worth a revisit next Monday and perhaps the week after. If it doesn't get any better by February, I will probably give up on it if the Network doesn't do it first.

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