I have the boobs, I bring the booze, and I review shit.
How this new review series works: This will be a series unlike any you’ve read before. At the end of each review, I will be giving my rating of a series or movie in the form of wine bottles. The number of bottles will depend on how many I had to drain to get through the series or movie. Thus, like in golf, the lower the number of bottles, the better the show. A larger number of bottles means I had to suffer through it, chugging my way along. My scale will be 1-5. There will be no spoilers through these, just an opinionated asshole with an unhealthy fascination for wine letting you know if you should dedicate your time to whatever I'm reviewing.
Let's get started!
What I watched: The Woman Across the Street from the Girl in the Window, series
Where to find it: Netflix
Number of episodes: 8
Length of episodes: 22-25 mins
Wine type: Red to fit in with the narrative
Wine brand: Chateau St. Michelle Cabernet Sauvignon (to complete the parody narrative. Get it? 10 points to Gryffindor!)
Wine, casseroles, suburbia, and murder. The perfect recipe for a story, right? If you're an author of a female-led mystery psychological thriller, the answer is YES. When I first saw the trailer for this show, I was unsure of its purpose. I couldn't tell from the preview whether it was a parody, a comedy, or an actual thriller. It wasn't until I was a couple episodes in that I realized what it was ALL OF THE ABOVE!
Let me just say that the episode length already won me over. I really enjoy shorter episodes. I don’t have to dedicate an entire weekend to binge watch only to get through half a series. Come on, people! I'm a new mom, with a ton of other things to do. My days are looking forward to the evening when my little monster goes to sleep for the night and I get a few hours of quiet time to myself. Then the anxiety of what to do happens. Do I play PlayStation? Do I watch something new? Do I start a movie? My time is PRECIOUS! So, when I saw the beautiful Kristen Bell chugging wine out of a glass that held a whole bottle, I first double-checked and made sure there was no camera in my house that this show was getting ideas from, then settled in to get into the series.
It still took me 2 evenings to finish, because ADD, but boy was I happy to sit down and watch it at the end of my day! This series was beautifully done. It absolutely is a parody of all the female-led mystery psychological thriller books that have been made into movies. This one specifically was mirrored after The Girl on the Train, and The Woman in the Window. Now, I've read both books and watched both movies. This series nailed it! It included beautiful homes (and we have no idea what the main characters do to afford them), beautiful people, all the wine, so many casseroles, annoying neighbors, tragic backstories, intriguing handy-men, fun and ridiculous sex, children selling chocolate, and MURDER. What else is needed? Add in some cheesy narration from the main character, and you have a basic-white-girl hit.
The main character of the series is Anna, played by Kristen Bell. Anna has a unique fear that petrifies her and causes her to faint a couple of times throughout the show. (The fainting is pretty ridiculous, but it's brought on by a legitimate reason.) Neil (Tom Riley) is the sexy single dad who moves in across the street and who, of course, has a British accent. It wouldn’t be a successful drama if there weren’t any British accents!
The show carries more huge names such as Michael Ealy as the ex-husband, Brenda Koo as the nosy, self-righteous neighbor (think Petunia Dursley from Harry Potter), Christina Anthony as the badass detective. Plus, this show is directed by Michael Lehman, who's known for American Horror Story, Californication, True Blood, a couple of episodes of Dexter, and much more. It’s a perfect line-up.
Throughout the episodes, I was curious about what would happen next, the story behind specific characters, and the cliches that brought them all together. Even though it was a parody, there was a cohesive storyline throughout. The ending had a surprise that kept my wine in the bottle a little longer, making it a pleasant reward for watching all of the episodes. The sense of parody vs. an actual story walked the delicate line of being too cliché and boring, and actually enjoyable. It was brilliant! I really hope the crew behind this series dives into more parodies for my enjoyment.
With that being said, I think it’s obvious, but my review rating is: (drum roll please)
1 out of 5! My highest mark! These reviews are off to a heck of a start!
Have you watched The Woman Across the Street from the Girl in the Window? What were your thoughts? Let's share a glass in the comments!