Thursday, October 9, 2008

I didn't watch USA's miniseries "The Starter Wife" when it aired last year. I really thought it felt like something my wife would like better than I would as it was based on a chick lit book. She watched a couple of the episodes and then stopped watching as she didn't care that much for it. So it was with a bit of skepticism that I sat down to watch the 2 hour premiere that airs tomorrow night on USA (9pm/8c).

The series starts with a quick recap of the miniseries: Molly Kagan, a shopaholic, is woken up from her life of shopping when her husband, a studio head, asks for a divorce. She begins to rebuild her life and starts to date, but of course her new boy is not all he's cracked up to be. Here's a more thorough recap:

The new series starts with some weird spoof of Elizabeth as Molly tells her friends she has sworn off men and sex (and petting). Molly has decided instead she needs to focus on making her own life and raising her daughter. Of course just because Molly says she's done with men, doesn't mean men will be done with her and Zach, the leader of her new writing class, may just be able to break her. Molly joins the class in hopes of reinvigorating her writing career, but it's not her books that impress the class, instead it's her journal, where she writes down her fantasies, the gossip she hears, and so much more.

While attending a party at Zach's Molly takes her journal tries to get a deal writing a weekly column, but what the publisher really wants is the scandalous gossip that's inside Molly's journal. And when the journal goes missing Molly's world turns upside down. It's this sub-plot that really had me enjoying the show and wondering where it will go next.

Now I'll admit I really wasn't looking forward to watching this show, but I wanted to give it a try because I really like Debra Messing. And while the first hour didn't really have me aching to keep watching, the second hour did draw me in. I'm interested to know what will happen between Molly and Zach and most of all to see what happens with that Journal.

But the show is definitely not perfect. As I said the first hour is slow and somewhat strange as it takes a little while to get used to the movie spoofs that seem to come out of the blue (although I loved the Frankenstien and Raiders spoofs) and the pacing seemed a bit off. But I guess that happens when you're trying to take something that had an ending and extend it into it's own show. Also the sub-plots with Molly's friends Joan (Judy Davis) and Devon (Chris Diamantopoulos) didn't really capture my attention. Devon's story was to obvious and although I enjoyed Joan and her first "assignment" the aftermath with her husband lost my interest.

All in all I'll give the who another chance and see where it goes. It's clear USA is trying to capture another audience outside of those who watch it's Detective shows (Monk, Psych, and Burn Notice) and I probably fall outside of their target audience. So if you're a woman between the ages of 35 and 55 you'll probably enjoy it a lot more than I did.

You can see a clip from the premiere below:

Remember to tune in tomorrow night, USA at 9/8 c (and then 10/9 c in the subsequent weeks).