I’m always on the lookout for sparks of good television. Especially something that I can watch with my almost-wife! She hates at least half of the shows I watch. Not dislike, she hates. Raising Hope…is unfortunately one of those.
In the beginning, I loved Raising Hope! I really enjoyed the comedic logic loops in their poverty class banter. The writing is what hooked me. The characters kept me. And realizing that was Cloris Leachman running around topless, I decided to binge the show. A bag of Saltines, a bottle of water, and pants-less me. (Just because I’m trying to eat healthier doesn’t mean I’m can’t be a slob.) Lucas Neff, Martha Plimpton, and Garrett Dillahunt were brilliant at playing smart-dumb. And I’ve seen a few episodes of The Riches with Shannon Woodward…so that TV crush could continue! (Shh! Don’t tell my almost-wife!)
The baby premise has been recycled throughout TV…and movies. (And real life for that matter.) But Raising Hope worked. Martha Plimpton and Cloris Leachman both recieved Emmy noms for this show! I mean, why not right? It’s not like they’re going to win. Modern Family has raped the Emmy’s for years. And I mean raped. Like…dark alley…middle of the night…just them and that statue exchanging screams of enjoyment and help. (Get off ’em Modern Family! Can’t you leave them alone! You’re destroying innocence!)
I’ve received criticism from comedian friends for watching that show. To those friends I say fuck off. (Sorry for my french, I can’t stand close minded people.) I loved the first 2 seasons of Raising Hope. I took a break for a while and came back a couple of years later after the show got cancelled. I didn’t think anything of it, every show gets cancelled at some point. And yesterday I finished season 3. What happened? I feel like they ran out of material. Jimmy got the girl. Hope is fine. Now they’re stuck on “what can we find funny today?” gimmick. I can’t stand that. Out of the Season 3 as a whole I probably laughed once per episode. And each laugh had nothing to do with the context of the show. It was either very well written banter hiding in the middle of a scene, superbly timed jokes, Raising Hope successfully pulling off a parody episode, or maybe I just enjoyed the 30 second ending of the big hearted family moments. The rest of the season was…bull honkey! When Barney couldn’t make a cash register work, bent down, and got hit in the forehead with the drawer…I was pissed. Those jokes are from the Charlie Chaplin era! Don’t get me wrong, I love Charlie Chaplin, but those are silent films. No dialogue. He also didn’t have 100 years of film history and 70 years of TV history to push him! I can’t stand jokes like that with no attempt to modernize them! You are a TV show! While I am an artist and appreciate the effort and entertainment value, on paper you are there to make ratings and money! Moments like that are lazy and uninspired and to me mean nobody fucking cares about the show anymore! If the producers and the writing staff don’t care, why should I?
Whew. Calming down. Deep breathes. Deep breathes. *clearing throat* I still have season 4 to watch. Yes, I just went on a rant about one joke that pissed me off down in my bones. And the third season as a whole dropped in quality. But I want to finish Raising Hope. I have loyalty from all the good laughs that show gave me. And I would be honored and very blessed to work on a show such as Raising Hope. Many good things were created through this show and whether those comedian friends of mine will admit it or not, Raising Hope is a part of comedic television history. And I would be happy to binge watch it again in the future…most of it anyway. Wish me luck amigos! Season 4, here I come!