Pushing Daisies: another leaked US TV show

The leakage from American TV land continues, with the intriguing pilot for Pushing Daisies the latest to slip out early...

Pushing Daisies. A show with real potential?

The leakage from TV production houses seems to have begun as a trickle, and now consumed three counties and half the national grid. The latest unaired production to bubble to the surface is an entirely original concept by Barry Sonnenfeld, yes he of Men in Black.

Again, thanks to all who e-mailed us, and here’s one take on the now-leaked Pushing Daisies

“There possibly aren’t words to explain how weird this show is, but I’ll try. As the title infers, it’s about death. We’ve had quite a few TV shows covering this subject in recent years, such as Dead Like Me, Six Feet Under and True, to mention a few.

But this isn’t like those, even if it bears some resemblance in tone to Dead Like Me.

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For starters it isn’t set in the real world, it’s set like some quirky modern fairytale in a space where every room is cinematic, each car is an automotive sculpture and the outdoors look like they’ve been annexed from the Wizard of Oz.

It’s also narrated by…get ready for this…Jim Dale.

No, really, Jim Dale…the one who plays an idiot in the Carry On series, if that’s much of a clue. And the scary part about this is that he does a really good job.

In the first five minutes the rules of this show are presented, and strange and peculiar rules they are.

Ned, our hero, discovers through an unfortunate accident between his Golden Retriever, Digby and an 18 wheeler, that if he touches a dead creature it will come back to life. If that was the whole story, what a predictable exercise this would be. It transpires that this amazing power has some small print for young Ned, and pretty big catches they are.

The first he discovers when his mother spontaneously drops dead before him. Using his power he brings her back, and alive she stays, for a short while. Unfortunately to maintain some cosmic balance, after 60 seconds the neighbour and father of his adolescent love drops stone dead. Okay, that’s a problem, at least morally.

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But a bigger problem transpires when his mother kisses him goodnight that evening, when she returns to her previous, lifeless state, from which she never returns.

His timeframe to decide if the resurrection is the semi-permanent variety or risk free is 60 seconds, after which someone dies, somewhere, somehow.

As such he can’t touch the dog, and by the end of the show he can’t touch the now fully matured love of his life, the yummy-beyond-words Anna Friel. This might of made a quirky but finite story if they hadn’t introduced Emerson Cod P.I., played by the charming I’m-a-cop-usually Chi McBride. He sees the commercial aspect of Ned’s power, and together they interrogate the newly murdered and solve the crimes.

As cheesy as that might sound it’s all presented in a very slick manner, with everyone speaking in a totally unique style.

I’ve never heard dialogue like this. It’s polished and witty throughout. It just concerns me that the writers will have breakdowns producing an entire season of such elegant conversations, but that’s their problem.

Writer-producer Bryan Fuller (Heroes, Wonderfalls, Dead Like Me) has outdone himself this time, or gone entirely over the top, depending how you look at it.

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The pilot episode has left a very strong impression overall. It’s also left me genuinely curious to see how the relationships between the characters develop, and the how the curiously fake nature of the world plays its part in proceedings.

America, or the UK for that, has seen nothing like Pushing Daisies. But I wonder if the MTV generation are quite ready for this, or will they’ll just balk at its inherent cleverness and turn to mindless junk”.

Meanwhile, carry on at this rate and the lottery draw’ll be leaked before it’s been broadcast too…