I’ve got a Blogcritics review up now that’s basically me shaking my head over CBS’s Viva Laughlin:
- TV Review: Don’t Get Too Attached To Viva Laughlin
“I found it strangely compelling, enough that I had to seek out the better-executed original British version, but compelling like rubber-neckers must feel about slowing down to see a car wreck.” Read more.
What it’s about: Based on a BBC series called Blackpool, Viva Laughlin is about a guy who opens a brand new casino in a smaller city in Nevada. Did I mention that this is a musical?
What’s good: Oh sweet Lord, how I love this show. If you’d told me that CBS was going to put on an Americanized remake of an interesting but not great Brit-drama and that the characters would spontaneously start singing, I wouldn’ve told you that sounded like certain disaster. To have it turn out to be the best network show of the season (or at least my personal favorite – by a very wide margin – is damn near miraculous.
It’s important to note for the skeptical (though this might not allay any reservations) that the songs are not original compositions, but pop tunes spanning the last 40 or 50 years. “Viva Las Vegas” and Blondie’s “One Way or Another” are some notable ones. The characters don’t lip synch or merely sing…they sing along with the original track, so you can hear both at once…an interesting and confident stylistic choice.
Cast is also great. Lloyd Owen, a british actor with a long career behind him plays the lead, and he’s got just the right amount of smarmy confidence and, when the story calls for it, abject fear. And, somehow, they got Hugh Jackman (Wolverine from Oklahoma!) to play the bad guy! Melanie Griffith makes an appearance as well as a sort of washed-up femme fatale.
Viva Laughlin is totally ridiculous and extremely fun to watch. It reminded me a lot of the early seasons of Nip/Tuck, only without the mean-streak and pretentious aspirations. Oh, and with singing.
What’s not so good: Hell, I don’t know. I just really, really love this show.
Will it be a hit? FOR SURE !!!!!!
Viva Laughlin Preview – New Series From CBS
I know what I like, and I like this Show !!!
You decide if you like Viva Laughlin:
copy and paste or double click on these links:
New Clip on Viva Laughlin:
VIVA LAUGHLIN, the new mystery drama with music, will have a special preview on Thursday, Oct. 18 (10:00-11:00 PM, ET/PT) following CSI before moving to its regular Sunday (8:00-9:00 PM, ET/PT) time period on Oct. 21 to take advantage of a two week window in the schedule without football overruns.
Thursday, Oct. 18
10:00-11:00 PM VIVA LAUGHLIN (Special Preview)
Sunday, Oct. 21
8:00-9:00 PM VIVA LAUGHLIN (Time Period Premiere)
Heh. The above announcement has been a paid presentation brought to you by viral marketers.
Eek! This show was everything I expected and more. I expected a car wreck, instead I was given a trainwreck caused by a 6 car pile up on a crossing. I have never seen a show more deserving to be put out of it’s misery. The only good thing to come from this is Eric Winter’s inevitable return to Brothers and Sisters and possibly a reprieve for Jericho.
Ratings would suggest it will happen soon: it debuted after CSI, CBS’s top-rated show, and lost 63% of that audience, and was down 41% from the usual show in that timeslot, Without a Trace. It was the lowest rated show on a major network of the night, and the lowest-rated for CBS on that night, new or repeat, for years.
It airs in its regular timeslot tonight, though, so they’re not likely to pull the plug until they see how it does there. As TV Week put it, “But if you’re working on the show, you might want to stop payment on the boat.”
Damn, I’d guessed K-Ville for first scripted series to get the axe, since it got such a headstart on Viva Laughlin.
You clearly underestimated the potency of Viva Laughlin’s suckiness, whereas K-Ville, while still sucky, is at a much lower potency;)
Good review though. They should have nailed it to the front door of every home in America so none of those viewers would have to sit through the show in the first place.
Yeah, and I was mostly going by the ratings of K-ville – I didn’t think it was very good, but it didn’t have DIE SHOW DIE written all over it.
I’m glad I saw Viva Laughlin though. Once. It was fascinating to see how badly they went wrong. Another review I read (Time?) said Lloyd Owen appeared to be giving it his all in a community theatre production. That’s exactly how it came across – bad community theatre.