Monday, September 22, 2008

Keeping it simple, Hank Moody style

The only reason I wanted to see Californication was because of David Duchovny. Even though I had not read anything about the episodes, I had no hesitation in renting the first season DVD, although I only got Disc 1 which contained 6 episodes. I figured if the show was good, I would get the second disc which had the remaining 6 episodes.

With each episode lasting 30 minutes or so, the first DVD was 3 hours in length. I had only planned to watch one episode at a time, but after I put in the disc, I only stopped after the 3 hours was up. In fact, I hardly noticed the time fly by. I found Californation to be such a fun show, very well written and cast. The on screen relationship between Duchovny & Natascha McElhone's characters is just refreshing.

Duchovny plays Hank Moody, a writer struggling to get his new novel out. He still lives off the fame (and money) from his previous book and never gets tired of the drink or the women. He is also in the process of separation from Karen (Natascha McElhone) but the two keep in touch, partly because of their 12 year old daughter Becca (Madeleine Martin). And then there is Charlie (hilariously played by Evan Handler), Hank's agent who grills him every now and then about his proposed new novel. Hank and Charlie are good friends who often share tales of their women adventures, and even offer advice to one another. Charlie also has an interesting relationship with his wife and secretary. Okay, interesting is an understatement! I cannot forget Karen's current boyfriend, Bill, and Bill's 16 year old daughter Mia who had a fling with Hank. To Hank's defense, he was not aware that Mia was Bill's daughter or that she was 16 when he slept with her.

Despite all the emotional pulls and tugs between the characters, the show is amazingly balanced -- mature yet playful, humorous but still keeping things in perspective. In a way, Hank shares some similarities with Nick Hornby's characters from Fever Pitch & High Fidelity but the presence of a daughter also gives Hank a level head.

And for the record, I finished off disc 2 also in 3 straight hours. Season 2 starts on Sunday, Sept 28. I can't wait to see more of Mr. Moody and Karen.

Average rating of all 12 episodes: 9/10


Megan said...

It is a great show. FYI- Both Fancast and Showtime are showing it online before it premieres on air. It will be available on Fancast on Friday, September 26th.

Californication on Fancast

-Meg (on behalf of Fancast)

sachin said...

Thanks for the info megan.

Megan said...

Sure :) I will say that I've heard the second season is intense. Can't wait!

-Meg (on behalf of Fancast)

Bukowski said...

Nice to see that someone enjoys the show – but really, get your facts straight.

Hank and Karen never got married, so "legal separation" is impossible. Also, they don't simply stay in touch because of the kid: they're still very much in love, despite all the shit that broke them up.

As for Mia having a 'fling' with Hank. The word 'fling' + present continious implies an ongoing thing, which is not the case. They sleep together in episode 1, only to never return to anything physical again.

As for the money and the books: Hank is living off of the succes of his THIRD novel ('God Hates Us All'), of which half his capital (maybe more) are made up of the movierights. Also, he has written two other books: Seasons in The Abyss and South of Heaven, whose titles are (like the 3rd) references to Slayer albums.

Look more closely and the show has even more to offer, for instance all the pop-references in the episode titles alone.
Nevertheless, it's awesome. Good ofyou to put the word out there.

Sachin said...

Thanks for setting the "facts straight".