CRAZY EX-GIRLFRIEND: -You Stupid Bitch- (2016)

(CW/YouTube) There are a lot of highlights to CRAZY EX-GIRLFRIEND — it’s wall-to-wall amazing, apart from the off-putting title — and despite the fact that I’m not quite the target audience for this song, or show for that matter, I think about this song. A lot. If pressed, I’d argue it’s my favorite song from the show. While it’s not subtle or as elaborately staged as other numbers, it perfectly encapsulates the show and I love the closing shot.* If you don’t have the time for another full series of TV, I think this video would be a satisfying watch and you could leave it there.However, if you want to know more: the show is about Rebecca Bunch (actor/writer/co-creator Rachel Bloom, previously best known for quality nerd-specific YouTube videos such as FUCK ME, RAY BRADBURY) who upends her life as a high-powered NYC real-estate lawyer to pursue bro-y slacker Josh Chan (Vincent Rodriguez III), her teen boyfriend from summer camp, who lives in West Covina, California.**

What follows over four seasons is a musical dramedy about Rebecca trying to navigate life, cope with mental illness, and become a better person with a little help from her friends. It manages to skillfully do so by packing several songs into each hour-long ep, all of which are exceptionally written and staged. Many of the songs were co-written by the recently deceased Adam Schlesinger — fuck COVID — who also worked on the original numbers in previously recommended JOSIE AND THE PUSSYCATS, but is obviously best known for founding FOUNTAINS OF WAYNE.

Adam aside, CRAZY EX-GIRLFRIEND was certainly the collective vision of Bloom and co-creator Aline Brosh McKenna (who adapted THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA and co-wrote CRUELLA). It’s singularly focused, and everyone involved gave their all. The show stumbled from time to time but, as a whole, it was one of the most consistently entertaining and emotional TV shows I’ve seen aired within the past decade.

“Yes, I deserve this!”

** It’s all spelled out in the very catchy opening song but the show ditches its Broadway spectacle sheen pretty quickly because, well, it was on the CW. They didn’t have GALAVANT money.