Today, I make a minor complaint about the new ABC sitcom, Not Dead Yet, and how it doesn’t seem to have any real rules at all…yet, at least.
This is Disgrace Distract and Bother Me, a feature where I just point out minor things that annoy me in pop culture. Basically, think of it like the lowest level of criticism, then Remember to Forget is the middle, where it’s like, “Okay, this is bad, but not, like, offensively bad” and finally, Things That Turned Out Bad is for, “This is seriously messed up.”
SPOILERS ABOUT NOT DEAD YET AHEAD!
Not Dead Yet is a cute ABC sitcom starring Gina Rodriguez as Nell, a woman in her late 30s who is forced to move back home after a disastrous breakup (a romance that sadly saw her abandon her career as she moved to Europe with her boyfriend, but then after she had a miscarriage, the relationship fell apart). She returns to the small newspaper she worked for in the past, only now she is “stuck” doing obituaries. She is shocked to learn that the people who she is writing about visit her as ghosts, disappearing once she finishes their obituaries. This allows her obituaries to be really good, since she really gets to know these people, but also allows her to improve her own life, as the people she is writing about tend to be notable folks who are experts in various fields.
However, a weird part of the show is that they haven’t seemed to decide on how the rules with the ghosts work just yet. Initially, it seemed pretty straightforward. She writes their obituary and then the ghosts move on to the next step in their afterlife. The first ghost she dealt with was Monty (Martin Mull), a songwriter who led her to befriend his widow, Cricket (Angela Gibbs).
The issue is that Mull was SO good at Monty, and Gibbs so good as Cricket that Gibbs has become a de facto regular cast member on the show, and so, too, has Monty now returned twice for, well, no real good reason. In his first return, the show at least tried to hand wave it by saying that Monty needed to help Cricket move on, but now he showed up again and they didn’t even attempt a hand wave.
If the ghosts just return willy nilly, well, then that’s weird, right?
On a much less important note, in the latest episode the ghost that Nell is writing about is a therapist, so Nell has a therapy session with her, but the therapist is writing notes on a notepad with a pen. So….huh? We already saw a bit where ghosts can’t interact with human stuff (like eat or whatever), but they can write on notepads with pens? I know the idea was to trick people into thinking Nell was seeing an actual therapist, but they could have just NOT had the therapist use a notepad. But, again, minor issue, but one that also speaks to how the show really doesn’t have any of this stuff figured out yet.
Feel free to e-mail me at my all-new, much shorter e-mail address, email@example.com, for suggestions for pet peeves of your own. They might match mine, and I’ll run them!