Thursday, November 23, 2017

Now on Netflix: Lady Dynamite, Season 2 (2017)

Lady Dynamite, Season 2 (2017) - Created by Pam Brady, Mitchell Hurwitz; Starring Maria Bamford, Fred Melamed, Mary Kay Place, Ana Gasteyer, Mo Collins, Bridgett Everett, Lennon Parham, Ed Begley Jr., Olafur Darri Olafson, Andy Samberg.

By Kenny Howell

The first few episodes of the first season of Maria Bamford's Lady Dynamite were fresh, weird, stupid, hilarious at times, and just plain fun.

But things fell apart down the stretch for the show which ran out of ideas. Luckily, the episode order was cut from 12 to eight for the second season, and it benefits greatly.

Watching Lady Dynamite...it's just a lot. There is a lot of craziness going on and it frankly can be exhausting at times. It definitely is a peak inside Bamford's brain who has battled with bipolar disorder throughout her life, because the show can get insanely manic.

On the flip side of that, it is just really funny. It's a very absurdist, stupid comedy, but can be insightful when it deals with topics like women's issues, especially in the entertainment industry.

In season 2, we see Maria in a committed relationship with Scott (Olafur Darri Olafson), which she starts to question, and she finally tries to deal with her issues with her overbearing mother. She also is in line for her own TV show and Elon Musk's new streaming service Muskvision, which bears a resemblance to Netflix.

The season in part is told in three parts. The past looking back to Maria growing up in Minnesota, the present with Scott and the future where she is filming her TV show that turns into space erotica at some point. The future is shot in an MTV style bombardment of your senses, and it is the portion that can be exhausting to watch. There is a plenty of funny things within it, especially coming from Ana Gasteyer (Rapture-Palooza), who is directing the show. It's just...a lot.

Lady Dynamite does suffer from some of the problems of the first season, mostly that it tails off in the back half of the season. But with just eight episodes, it is a lot less noticeable. It gives more time to Maria's crazy, crazy brain, and keeps this as one of the more unique, refreshing comedies out there, despite its faults.

The first two seasons of Lady Dynamite are now streaming on Netflix.

Rating: ***

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