Monday, October 15, 2007

"Where on earth did you get skates in a convent?": Desperate Housewives

Once again nothing of consequence happened in this episode, so instead of recapping last night's events as a whole I'm taking this opportunity to talk about something that's been bugging me throughout the first three episodes of season four: the complete wasting of Nathan Fillion.

When I first heard that Fillion would be playing Dana Delaney's husband, I was ecstatic. Delaney's stellar turns on
Pasadena and Kidnapped have quietly turned her into one of my favorite television actresses, and I thought the blending of her unsettlingly controlled demeanor with Fillion's deadpan sarcasm and perfect comedic timing would be a recipe for something great in season four. Unfortunately although Delaney is thriving so far, Fillion has been left to dangle in the breeze, looking lost in a part that just doesn't suit his talents.

Since he's arrived on the scene poor Fillion has had nothing to do except carry on expositional conversations with Delaney and wear dorky clothes, but I'd been reserving full judgment on his character until he'd had a chance to interact with more of the cast. This finally happened last night due to Susan's annual (and annually hated) charades party, and how does the show take "advantage" of his talents? By once again placing him on the receiving end of a situation instead of letting him instigate one, this time when Gabby intentionally flirts with him in order to make Carlos jealous. In his every scene on the show so far he's simply been a set piece for the scene to revolve around rather than a real, actualized character, and he literally gets nothing to do in any of his own scenes. This causes him to just sort of look like he's standing around, bored and waiting for his next line.

The sad thing is that the storyline he is involved in isn't all bad. Yes, it feels like a retread of things the show has done before, but with Delaney at the helm it's turning into something at least mildly interesting. Fillion's character simply seems to serve no purpose yet, and as someone who knows how dynamic he can be it is rather frustrating. I'm sure people who have never seen his other work don't even notice he's there, and that's just wrong. Wrong, I say, because he's the sort of actor that should be allowed to do work that makes people stand up and take notice.

This isn't Fillion's fault. This is the fault of a writing staff that has no idea what a gem of an actor they have on their hands, to which I say go forth and NETFLIX, writers! Watch Firefly, Serenity, and Slither! See the comedic potential you're wasting! Your viewers will thank you.


David Sims said...

I knew they'd waste Fillion. I KNEW it. The second I heard it announced, I knew not to get excited.

Still sucks for him. I hope it's enough to get him a new show on ABC, though.

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know where Gabrielle's green & white dress (in the photo above) is from?? Love it.