Santa Clarita Diet: Low on Fat, High on Laughs
Hungry for blood and guts but want to pass on the horror? Are you a fan of genre-bending surreal shows? If you answered yes to both of those questions, then Santa Clarita Diet is the show for you. It’s a fun fusion of iZombie and Desperate Housewives, with a splash of gore. Santa Clarita Diet isn’t for the faint of heart though, nor is it for those who don’t have a dark sense of humor. If you don’t think a married couple nervously pushing body parts into an open grave while arguing about losing the top of a container is funny, then you won’t enjoy this show.
Sheila (Drew Barrymore) and Joel (Timothy Olyphant) are a married couple that very quickly have to adjust their lives in the presence of an unforeseen illness. Sheila has come down with a bad case of hunger for flesh, or Zombism as I like to call it. She isn’t mindless, but she certainly is dead. Now controlled completely by her impulses, Sheila goes from repressed and docile wife to the life of the party. Her husband, however, has difficulty grappling with his new reality. In shock, as anyone would be, he is reluctant to help his wife find the human flesh she needs to survive. That doesn’t mean that Joel is boring, though. He still manages to be a compelling and hilarious character who tries to stay calm, but inevitably breaks down and out of frustration unleashes a flurry of curses.
Santa Clarita Diet thrives on it’s absurdist and grotesque comedy. Again, this is a show for people who like dark, over-the-top comedy. And I don’t mean Three Stooges over-the-top. I mean more like finding-a-man-disemboweled-in-the-backyard-of-a-perfect-suburban-home-by-your-newly-zombified-wife type of comedy. It won’t be for everyone, but if this is your jam, I think you’re going to love it.
While I have only seen the first two episodes, thus far I do have one issue with Santa Clarita Diet. While it delivers on really big laughs, they aren’t consistent. When the jokes are there, they’re great. But when they’re not, you might get a little bored. It’s like a boxer who won’t throw a punch until he KNOWS it will land. While this show appears to be carefully crafted, it does feel a bit slow at times.
Regardless, Santa Clarita Diet is off to a strong start. I’m hoping it finds it’s footing as the series progresses, and I hope it begins to deliver a steadier stream of jokes. Only two episodes in and I’m already excited to see where the story goes next. Give the first episode a try. You’ll immediately know if it’s right up your alley, or outside your comfort zone. Either way, it’s a show you won’t likely forget.