Friday, October 19, 2007

VIVA Lauglin

On the eve of the last of the Rat Pack dying --Joey Bishop--rest his soul, Viva Laughlin reared its musical head and aired on CBS Thursday night.
A splash, as a diver glides through a blue pool, the swimmer emerges into the hot Laughlin sun. We meet Ripley Holden. He gets into his car in his white suit, the engine starts and the music comes on and it's Elvis singing Viva Las Vegas. Ripley starts to sing along. Okay, I thought, he's singing with the radio but no, as he gets out of the car and enters his--in the process of being built casino--he continues to sing and it turns into the campy musical that this show is apparently supposed to be.
If you caught Pushing Daisies last week there was a scene in that dramedy that was hilarious. It was in the cafe and the girl was singing about how to get her boyfriend back. You'd have to see it because I just can't describe the scene well enough. But it was similar to what Viva L is doing.
This has possibilities.
It's as if the dialogue was written around the songs so that the actors are singing but you don't realize it for about a minute because it appears as if they are just saying their lines.
The conflict begins when Ripley loses his financial backing. Enter Nicky Fontana the evil protagnist. The man with the money who won't be taken for a fool and won't relinquish his power ever.
More songs, more clever singing and dancing and eventually a dead former partner and a win at the tables moves this plot along.
I'll watch it again. I liked it.
Seedy, campy Laughlin, I'll be there.
See ya soon.


Jane said...

Here is a new show I will definitely TiVo because:
1) The critics hated it and
2) The ratings tanked and most importantly...
3) Jeri liked it! That's all I need to know, I'm going to check it out.

Hey're on a roll, love your comments!

---Jane (Also I am in withdrawl from the lack of "Flight of the Conchords"...must have new weird musical show)

Lisa said...

I'm with Jane and Jeri on this!

I watched most of the first episode and thought that the way the songs were integrated was interesting and not nearly as wince-inducing as it might have been. I even thought that Melanie Griffith was quite good in her song number in the bedroom. I don't understand why TV critics would savage this -- because it's different and shows some kind of a nutty vision? Obviously not for everyone, naturally. Goodness knows it's not going to last but what the least the Nose will be watching, eh?