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Freaks and Geeks “Pilot” September 25, [1999)

Did Serge Daney give us the permission to write about television?

In some ways he did.

But I have long since broached the topic.

Long since tried to get inside TV.

Most successful from my perspective was Twin Peaks.

A minor success (from my position) was the first season of Saturday Night Live.

And so as we trim and pare, we try a new venture.

Freaks and Geeks.

I had always been curious about this show.

Linda Cardellini is pretty darn awesome.

I couldn’t stomach rewatching those Scooby Doo movies again at age 40, but she’s great in those.  Sadly, the films have become unwatchable for me.

But Cardellini is the bright spot in those films.

And she’s a great presence in this pilot episode.

John Francis Daley is such a cute kid here.

It’s almost impossible to keep from smiling every time I see him.

All 103 pounds of him 🙂

James Franco looks really young here.

He proved his acting worth to me in Harmony Korine’s masterpiece Spring Breakers.

But so far he’s a mouth-breathing replica of the Fonz.

Samm Levine has some real acting talent (albeit consisting strictly of insular sci-fi impersonations).  I’ve yet to warm up to the character, but I can see the talent underneath.

Seth Rogen is pretty bonehead throughout this episode.

I suppose that’s the persona they’re going with for him.

He’s ok.  No big star.  No eye-popping skills.  We shall see…

But Martin Starr is the real winner so far.

His look is immaculate.

Great acting!

Also essential is Ben Foster as Eli.

This element is priceless.

But the real surprise performance (though it’s very brief) is by Sarah Hagen as Millie Kentner.

So I’m looking forward to more of Cardellini, Starr, and even Daley.

It’s a great crew.

The writing is decent.

Jake Kasdan’s directing is passable.

I hope it improves.

The concept is excellent.

Can Freaks and Geeks really pull off something special?

-PD

2 responses to “Freaks and Geeks “Pilot” September 25, [1999)

  1. Thanks for that I have not seen the series yet. It is on my list now. Nice review.

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