Open Letters Love Amy

Because the Internet is easier than buying stamps and I will just lose your zip code anyway.

Tag: television

An Open Letter to Parks and Recreation

Dear Parks and Recreation,

I don’t think I am ready for this. I thought maybe it would be fine, because, whatever, you’re just a TV show and I am a grown adult human person. What’s the worst that could happen when you finally go off the air? It’ll probably be okay for a week or so. House of Cards will be on Netflix just a few days after your series finale and Vikings is back and also I think I solved the mystery of how to watch the new season of Broad City. (it is just on Hulu! So easy!)

But here is the thing about that: those shows aren’t you.

Because you are different. You are my favorite fictional people in one of my favorite fictional worlds. I love it all. I love Perd and Andy and Leslie and Joan and even that brat Greg Pikitis. You are a delight and even at your worst you are some of my favorite television in the history of all television I have ever seen (and I have seen a great deal of television; just ask Jon about the other day when we turned on the Apple TV and I had to quickly explain all those episodes of Friends with the little check next to them on the Netflix, or my old DVR, which faithfully held on to every rerun of The Mary Tyler Moore Show that aired during our time together).

I don’t really know how to describe it. You are just lovely. You’re like a best friend that you don’t really remember meeting for the first time, but who has always been there. You have made me laugh and cry at the same time more than any other piece of media. Those other shows are great too. I love watching them. But those shows aren’t comforting and wonderful in the same way that you are. You are just the greatest little television show and sometime in mid-April I will probably have a moment where I’m all “well, I guess this is the Saturday where I spend the entire day rewatching the entire series, pretending I haven’t seen it before,” just to relive the fun.

So thank you for all the magic and the fun and the Johnny Karate episode and Galentine’s Day and all of Leslie’s best friend nicknames for Ann and their awesome female friendship in general and drawing attention to the importance of breakfast food. Thank you for Lucy Lawless and Louis CK’s guest appearances. Thank you for that Twilight fan who handcuffed himself to that pipe (I think it was a pipe, maybe a chair?) in Leslie’s office. Thank you for Leslie’s binders and Lil Sebastian and for when The Decemberists performed. Thank you for Ben’s Letters to Cleo t-shirt and Cones of Dunshire and all of Leslie’s lines in the scene where Ben sat on the Iron Throne. Thank you for Shauna Malwae-Tweep, Ethel Beavers, Jean-Ralphio, Mona Lisa, Craig, Orin, Champion, and for the excellent arc of Andy and April’s relationship. Thank you for the Ron Swanson Pyramid of Greatness and for Ron Swanson in general. Thank you for all of Leslie’s dress shirts, especially those with fun patterns and also for that time she and Ben dressed up as Princess Buttercup and Wesley. God, thank you for just everything, okay?

I will keep watching all the television because there are lots of fun stories to watch and interesting characters to grow with. But I can’t imagine another show coming along anytime soon that is quite like you, with your wit, smart writing, and cleverness. Also thank you for life wisdom such as this:

“We have to remember what’s important in life: friends, waffles, work. Or waffles, friends, work. But work has to come third.”

Love, Amy

P.S. During season two (or maybe three, whatever, it was early-ish on), a guy I was dating said, “I just feel like Parks and Rec has never done one single joke,” and man, did I get so mad. That relationship did not work out, and I believe that our fundamental disagreement about your quality was an early indication of our inherent differences as people. Maybe that is overstating it, but I do not care.

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An Open Letter To Chris Brody

chris-brodyDear Chris Brody,

Get off my television. Go play hearts with Finn Walden somewhere far, far away and never again comment to your father about how many televisions are in your CIA safe house if I can hear you.

You are ruining Homeland for me and that is at least light treason.

Love Hate and repulsion, Amy

P.S. It’s not your fault, Jackson Pace. You didn’t write such a dopey character for yourself.

An Open Letter To Cory & Topanga’s Daughter

Dear Cory and Topanga’s Daughter,

Not to overwhelm you, but Boy Meets World was one of the most important, formative television shows of my childhood a close second only to The Wonder Years (previously detailed here). Sure, I also watched Growing Pains and Sabrina and Clarissa Explains It All and Brotherly Love, but nothing could top Boy Meets World.

So hearing the news that you will be getting your very own show on Disney Channel has me wishing I was still thirteen and had space in my DVR to keep up with whatever lessons you’ll learn and hijinks you’ll get into.

I don’t know what it was exactly about Boy Meets World that made it so wonderful. Maybe it was that it was never too preachy, too “let’s learn a lesson,” or too over the top with the physical and/or ridiculous humor. It had the perfect blend of all of that. I sympathized when Cory went through his awkward looking phase. I missed Minkus when he left. I thought Mr. Turner was hot, despite the mullet. I KNEW Jack was hot because I had eyes. I welcomed Rachel and Angela into my life during the fantastic, whimsical college years seasons. I gladly suspended disbelief as Mr. Feeny went to college with them all, cried when Sean’s dad died and loved the comical, weird turn Eric took later on. I gladly accepted the wedding invitation your parents threw up on the screen. I even bought the DVDs when they were available.

I spent most of my time with your parents during reruns on the Disney Channel, afternoons from 3:30 to 4 in that magical half-hour between when I got home from school and when my dad got home from work. You know, when I was supposed to be practicing clarinet (hello, natural talent like mine didn’t need to practice). But I first met Cory and Topanga thanks to my friend Lauren, who introduced me to the TGIF comedy block on ABC. These days, ABC could probably use your show there, instead of on the Disney Channel. What a wasteland that’s become.

Tim Allen’s Last Man Standing is painful and Reba’s triumphant return to the small screen, on Malibu Country, might be even worse. ABC obviously knows how to find funny family-friendly shows (Modern Family and Suburgatory are great), but why LMS and Malibu Country are on the air will continue to baffle me.

I do hope your show happens for reals and though you’re going to be on Disney Channel and thus won’t save ABC Friday nights from the ruin they’ve become, I hope you will at least guide and entertain a new generation of viewers as your parents did for kids my age. And please know that if Will Friedle ever makes a guest appearance as your fun uncle, I’ll delete Gran Torino (we all know I’m never going to get around to watching that anyway) clearing some space in the DVR to record the hell out of that episode.

Love, Amy

An Open Letter To MasterChef

Dear MasterChef,

Last season, I recapped you for Picktainment. It was a season full of the most exquisite food ever eaten by any humans in the history of everything, at least according to Gordon Ramsay. It was also a season full of Suzy and her stupid smirk. It was also a season in which Jennifer won. A fact I had to look up because she was that forgettable. She also happened to be a former Ms. Delaware. So there’s that.

This season, I will not be recapping you, mostly in thanks to the fact that my television does not currently have a power cord. Believe me – this fact has caused a fair amount of stress around my household. If that power cord was still in my possession, please believe I would be spending all my money on cable and DVR-ing the hell out of you and The Bachelorette. As it stands now, I have to watch everything on Hulu, meaning I’m a week behind on you.

But those audition episodes were comforting. By this I mean I won’t have to watch the rest of the season since everything is almost exactly the same. A few examples:

  • Chef Ramsay is introduced with the phrase “and then there’s this guy.” I’m paraphrasing slightly, but that’s basically what the announcer said. I never cease to be amazed by how much Gordon Ramsay loves himself. He’d be cut down to size if he knew the truth: he’s partially responsible for the loss of the aforementioned power cord. You see, thanks to him and his desire to open a restaurant at popular Los Angeles shopping destination, The Grove, The Farm of Beverly Hills was forced to shut down. Which meant my roommate was out of a job and moved away. When he did this, he cancelled cable and accidentally returned that cord with the cable box. Thanks a lot, Gordon.
  • Graham is gross and chooses to express this grossness by saying things like “great mouth feel.” The amount I am disgusted by this phrase cannot accurately be put into words.
  • Everything is still the best ever. The prizes are bigger than ever in MasterChef history and all the dishes are more exquisite than anything in the world, except for the awful dishes, which are the worst food known to man. The crazies are crazier than anyone in history as well. Apparently.

You tried to fool us by introducing a MasterChef trophy (which I don’t remember from last season, but given that I also didn’t remember who won, I am clearly not to be trusted) and some kind of food truck that lasted about a minute, but overall this season looks to be an exact repeat of the ridiculousness that went on last season. Sure, that’s likely true of most reality shows, but a person can only take so much Gordon and I’m thinking that I’m still over my limit from last summer. I might still tune in to see what kind of food these jokers are making, as I really do love to watch people cook. But this will only be the case if I don’t find a replacement power cord in the next few weeks and get myself some Food Network action. I’ll take Chopped and Iron Chef over you any day.

Love, Amy

An Open Letter To The Season Finale Of Mad Men

Dear Season Finale of Mad Men,

I cannot even begin to predict what you have in store. Lane already hanged himself, Pete got Rory Gilmore naked, and Peggy made her exit (I have some words for you about this below). Sally even “became a woman,” which prompted Betty to actually be a decent mother for the first time in possibly her entire life. What more could happen?

No matter what happens, the episodes that came before you this season were some of the best. Michael Ginsberg was one of my favorite new television characters since Chris Traeger came into my life via Parks and Recreation. This new kid from Mars really spiced things up this season. Not to mention all those snappy jackets. Though the highlight of the season (all of your forthcoming events excluded for now) might just have been watching Betty Draper eating Bugles. Those really are a great snack food. The only thing that could have been better would have been seeing her eat them one by one off her fingers, after using them as little finger hats, like all the pro snack eaters do.

So thanks for all the fun (Pete getting punched in the face was many different kinds of awesome), but let’s you and me get back to Peggy. It’s time for some serious talk about this issue. Peggy cannot be gone. It’s fine if she’s gone from Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce, (is Pryce still in there, what with the hanging – how does all that work?) but she absolutely cannot be gone from the show for good. And I’m not interested in some kind of rare, cameo-style thing, where she shows up drunk once or twice a season to make everyone uncomfortable, like Duck did. You are the last episode of the season and I need you to have some Peggy news in store. Peggy keeps all those “gentlemen” in ties in balance. She also says things like “I’m Peggy Olson and I want to smoke some marijuana.” Has everyone forgotten that beautiful moment?

All I want from tonight is a little reassurance that there is more Peggy Olson out there in the future. I know you likely have a lot of tricks up your sleeve and I am ready to be dazzled and confused and have my mind blown, as always. But just a hint of where Peggy is headed would help put my mind at ease. Think about it. From you I go nearly straight into the final season of Breaking Bad. Only severely mental instability (of the absolute best kind) is going to come of that and we both know it. I need a few weeks of peace before that begins.

Love, Amy

P.S. All my fingers are still crossed for a spinoff and/or webseries called, I don’t know, something like “Roger Sterling Doles Out Life Advice To Sally Draper For Hours and Hours and Nothing On Television Has Ever Been Better.” That’s just a working title. Let me know if you have any better ideas.