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Author Topic: Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt  (Read 547 times)
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TheMadCapper

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« on: 03-28-2015 13:59 »

While dog-sitting at my parents' place, I've been watching this Kimmy Schmidt business on their Netflix account. Anyone else caught it? It may not be great, but I've found it to be pretty good.

One thing I've noticed is that the main character bears certain similarities to Philip J Fry...
Scrappylive

Professor
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« Reply #1 on: 03-28-2015 15:47 »

This is definitely on my to-watch list for when I return to the States.

Tiny Fey and her cerebral by-product will always be amazing to me. (Though I do still need to watch 30 Rock, but there's probably another thread for that.)
JoshTheater

Space Pope
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« Reply #2 on: 03-28-2015 21:22 »

I've seen the first few episodes, and I'm not sure if I'll watch more. I enjoyed it to a certain extent, and I definitely don't think it's a bad show by any means, but I'm about as mixed about it as I was with 30 Rock. The comedy seems to be very hip on itself in an unendearing way, and the characters just slightly too cartoonish for my liking. I like Tina Fey a lot, but I don't think I've found her work to be as incredible as some do.
cyber_turnip

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« Reply #3 on: 03-28-2015 22:49 »

There was a pretty extensive discussion of the show in the test thread.

I felt that it was alright-ish to begin with and pulled itself to the standard of 30 Rock in the last few episodes of the season. Given how surprisingly serialised it was, it'll be interesting to see where it goes in the second season. Hopefully it'll pick up where it left off in terms of quality.

I'd definitely say it's worth sticking with, Josh, except that you don't sound that keen on 30 Rock either... so in your case, maybe don't bother.

It wasn't downright brilliant, but I'm certainly looking forward to season 2.
Beamer

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« Reply #4 on: 03-29-2015 04:47 »
« Last Edit on: 03-29-2015 04:48 »

Un-BREAK-able! They aliiiiive, damnit! It's a MIRacle!

My girlfriend and I binge-watched the first season over a single weekend when it was released, and we both loved it. It felt a bit like "30 Rock Lite" to begin with, but it hit its stride pretty quickly, and really came into its own in the back half of the season. smile

I'm actually a little saddened to hear you were never completely sold on 30 Rock, Josh, though I also can't really dispute anything you said about it - "cartoonish" pretty much sums up Tina Fey and Robert Carlock's work better than any other word. However, I've never seen it as a bad thing. I love cartoons, after all, and found it impressive that they've been able to pull off the "live action cartoon" vibe with their work, which must be one hell of a tough tightrope to walk from a production standpoint. And most 30 Rock fans agree that the show didn't truly become 30 Rock until it fully embraced the notion that it was a live action cartoon.

I pretty much see 30 Rock and Parks & Recreation as the spiritual successors to the "classic era" of The Simpsons - the latter inherited the show's heart and its impressive world-building, while the former inherited its humour. The structure and pacing of your average 30 Rock (and, by extension, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt) episode is almost identical to that of The Simpsons, as is the rapid-fire manner in which the jokes are constructed and delivered. Kimmy Schmidt also seems to have a bit more of a penchant for background/freeze-frame gags, a la Arrested Development.

Of course, this style has its drawbacks, the main one being that it can often be difficult to be truly invested as a viewer. There's no denying that Fey and Carlock care about their characters, but comedy is definitely their first priority. 30 Rock was essentially a punchline delivery machine, though it was a very witty, hard working and reliable punchline delivery machine. Maybe you might enjoy their work more if you went in with the same mindset you have when watching cartoons?
Spacedal11

Space Pope
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« Reply #5 on: 03-29-2015 06:16 »

Can't say I'm as sold on Kimmy Schmidt as I am with 30 Rock, but the latter holds a big place in my heart. But I did like it, although sometimes found the tone to be uneven. I'll definitely watch the next season but this isn't a show I see myself rewatching compared to other shows.
Beamer

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« Reply #6 on: 03-29-2015 12:35 »

Can't say I'm as sold on Kimmy Schmidt as I am with 30 Rock, but the latter holds a big place in my heart.

Well, if we're comparing the first 13 episodes of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt to the first 13 episodes of 30 Rock alone, I'm actually inclined to say the former's doing much better for itself at this point in its run.

But yes, I agree that 30 Rock is the superior show, and also holds a special place in my heart, too. Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt has yet to find itself a character as great as Jack or Jenna (although the latter didn't truly become a great character until about the third or fourth season, so I guess that point's somewhat moot given my previous statement).

As long as Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt keeps churning out material as funny as the "Daddy's Boy" bit, though, I think me and it are going to get along just fine. smile
cyber_turnip

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« Reply #7 on: 03-29-2015 13:11 »

I dunno if I'd agree with that. I thought 30 Rock's pilot, alone, was better than any of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. I don't really remember any of the subsequent 12 episodes, though - and for the record, I really like the pilot of 30 Rock so that's not like I'm taking a shot at Kimmy.
Beamer

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« Reply #8 on: 03-29-2015 14:52 »

I enjoyed 30 Rock's first season quite a lot, but it definitely took the show a while to figure out what it wanted to be. And the 30 Rock pilot doesn't have a particularly good reputation - Tina Fey herself said she hated that episode. I personally quite enjoy it, especially as far as pilots go, but it wouldn't exactly make a "top 20 episodes" list of the show for me (hell, those "first 13 episodes" I mentioned also contain series classics Jack-Tor, Tracey Does Conan and Black Tie, not to mention introducing some of the show's best recurring elements, such as Dennis Duffy and The Rural Juror).

Granted, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt is a bit of a blur to me given that I binge watched it in two days, but I remember thoroughly enjoying every moment. Maybe I'm just more smitten by it than I would be otherwise since I'm just so damn stoked to have new material from Tina Fey and Robert Carlock again. smile
Spacedal11

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« Reply #9 on: 03-29-2015 19:41 »
« Last Edit on: 03-29-2015 19:42 »

UKS's premise sets up for a lot of weird intersections of characters and plot that don't always connect. 30 Rock was at its core, a workplace comedy. Like even the first couple episodes of UKS had Titus plots that were pretty irrelevant to anything. Also does anyone, including the writers, remember Buckley by the end of the season?

I don't mean to be so harsh on the show but it's not perfect. Hilarious but flawed.
TheMadCapper

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« Reply #10 on: 03-29-2015 21:15 »

I'm also going to go on the record as saying that I like Ellie Kemper. She's cute, and can pull off a character that is naive but not totally stupid.
Beamer

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« Reply #11 on: 03-30-2015 02:42 »

Also does anyone, including the writers, remember Buckley by the end of the season?

Good thing 30 Rock never had anyone like that!

FishyJoe

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« Reply #12 on: 03-30-2015 22:22 »

Feminists always get pissed off when people talk about how female comedians aren't funny. But I swear it was true before Tina Fey existed!

I love Ellie Kemper. I think she is hilarious and ridiculously cute. I'd say this show is on par with 30 Rock, which I was a fan of. Tracy Morgan has gotten a lot gayer though, I guess that car crash really did a number on him. frown
Spacedal11

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« Reply #13 on: 03-31-2015 02:03 »

Also does anyone, including the writers, remember Buckley by the end of the season?

Good thing 30 Rock never had anyone like that!



You think maybe they'd learn after seeing how Josh and Danny's characters petered out on 30 Rock. I mean the hell if I know, it's not like I was dying for more intimate Kimmy and Buckley moments.
Beamer

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« Reply #14 on: 03-31-2015 03:21 »

Well, Buckley was introduced in the very first episode - it's quite common for shows to take a slightly different direction after their pilot. Bear in mind that Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt was originally intended to air on NBC, and was still produced like a regular network show, so unlike other Netflix originals, they didn't get to plan out their entire season before any production began. There would've been a gap between making the pilot and writing the rest of the series.
Melllvar

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« Reply #15 on: 04-05-2015 02:55 »

Kimmy is part Liz lemon, part Kenneth Parcell.  Ellie Kemper is hugely likeable, though.  I especially like her 90's-isms (as that's her frame of reference from being trapped in the bunker).   And Titus is a much better character than D'Fwan....

Oh, and Martin Short!
Spacedal11

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« Reply #16 on: 04-05-2015 05:44 »

And Titus is a much better character than D'Fwan....

D'Fwuck you talkin' about?
Beamer

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« Reply #17 on: 04-05-2015 07:16 »

Titus is a much better character than D'Fwan....

Well D'Fwan was only in 4 episodes of 30 Rock total and it was a very minor part, so you'd hope that he'd have a much better character to play in a "series regular" capacity. tongue
Melllvar

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« Reply #18 on: 04-08-2015 09:56 »

Point taken...

Having got to the end, I have to say that I love how the series got more bonkers as it went on.   Tina Fey's appearance as one half of the inept OJ lawyer team was genius. 
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