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"Pushing Daisies" Rundown: Episode 1, "Pie-lette"

"Pushing Daisies" Rundown: Episode 1, "Pie-lette"

Well, wasn't that delightful? The confection of a TV show that is "Pushing Daisies" finally arrived on Wednesday, bringing the world of the Pie Hole to living rooms everywhere. I can't wait to hear what you all thought of this sweet treat, so just

This show is so unlike anything else on television. It's rooted in reality, but just barely; everything takes place in an over-saturated, fantastical world where a man can bring things back to life.

Let's talk about Ned the pie maker. Ned realized as a boy that he had the power to both bring things back to life (and kill them again), all with a single touch. He accidentally killed his childhood crush's father and had retreated into a world of loneliness and pie crust before a private investigator named Emerson Cod realized he could use Ned's powers for good (and financial gain).

Now let's talk about Chuck, who came "ready-made from the Play Doh fun factory of life." Chuck stomped around with Ned as a kid, then kissed Ned at her father's funeral, not knowing Ned had anything to do with his death. She then retreated into a solitary life with her synchronized-swimming star aunts until an ill-fated vacation left her strangled on a ship.

It takes Chuck's death to bring her and Ned back together; he raises her from the dead to find out who killed her, but he can't bring himself to touch her again, so she stays alive — unbeknownst to anyone but Ned and Emerson, at least so far. They search down Chuck's murderer and collect a handsome reward. It would be paradise except for one thing: If Ned touches Chuck again, she'll die.

I've heard endless comparisons to Amelie and Big Fish, but I also think this show is its own thing: a police procedural - slash - romance with a dash of the supernatural thrown in. Here are some of the things that stood out to me:

  • This show reveals so much in its details — the goofy picture of Chuck that the newscasters showed while talking about her death; the scratching contraption that Ned uses to pet his dog; the eye patch that kept Aunt Lily from realizing that Chuck was alive again.
  • I'm a sucker for wordplay, and so this show's verbal cleverness is a selling point for me. I love lines like "they retreated from their retreat" and comebacks like Ned saying his convention was "conventional." Maybe it's a little cheesy at times; mostly, I think it's brilliant.
  • The show would run the risk of being too saccharine if not for Chi McBride as Emerson. He hits all the necessary cynical notes ("bitch, I was in proximity!") and keeps Ned in his place.
  • I don't have a great sense for Kristin Chenoweth's character yet, but I'm happy any time I see her. And how funny is the height difference between her and Lee Pace?
  • The little moments between Chuck and Ned make me squeal. The kissing monkeys! The fact that she covers her eyes when he says he's embarrassed to bring someone back to life in front of her! The way they clasp their hands behind their backs simultaneously!
  • Why is Ned so scared to touch normal, living people? If they're alive, he's not going to kill them.

I hope "Pushing Daisies" can keep up the high standard it set with this episode; that pilot couldn't have been cheap to make (in fact, there were reports that Barry Sonnenfeld was banned from directing future episodes because he went over budget, though those have been refuted) and I'm not sure how the show would scale back its visual effects and still keep its sense of whimsy. Some people — my boyfriend, for example — are also worried that the whole show will become about Ned and Chuck touching or not touching. I hope it maintains its momentum going forward. What about you? Are you psyched for more "Daisies" — or was all the sweetness too much to take?

Photos copyright 2007 ABC, Inc.

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Fashion Fashion 8 years
I loved it, and will keeping watching BUT Ned & Chuck not being able to touch is slightly torturous! But I am a sucker for whimsy so my Tivo is set! xo
ricarocks ricarocks 8 years
i could not have LO-HUH-VED it anymore!!!!!! ps: how gorgeous is lee pace?
aistea311 aistea311 8 years
I watched it online and I thought it was cute. The imagery is amazing and i want pie now! I cant wait until next week
nikkie45 nikkie45 8 years
loved it!
cubachi cubachi 8 years
Every year there is one stand out show of the pack. Last year without a doubt was Heroes. Several years ago it was Lost. This year, I believe Pushing Daisies will be it. The show is beautifully narrated, directed, written, and acted. I felt like I was watching a fairy tale of sorts. I am looking forward to the next episode.
lynn2007 lynn2007 8 years
I'm with everyone who say they loved it. It was cute, fresh, and absolutely beautiful. Of course, it doesn't hurt that Lee Pace is super cute either ;P
italygal italygal 8 years
all i saw ALL SUMMER LONG were those annoying posters. and not knowing anything about the show i thought the title was atrocious. and then i started hearing some buzz and then BUZZ gave it a great review so i decided to check it out. so glad it did. i was in heaven. this show is exactly the kind of thing i enjoy and it really was like escaping for an hour. also, lee pace won me over in the first shot. totally in love with him and the sexual tension between him and chuck is fantastic.
genvessel genvessel 8 years
ABC nearly killed my love for this show by constantly showing commercials before movies this summer... but it may have just won me over. i'll be curious to see where it all goes from here!
licia licia 8 years
I loved it!! It's such a beautiful and whimsical show, and I love every one of the characters! They all work really well together and the story is wonderful and original :D
Lucky-in-Love Lucky-in-Love 8 years
Wow, apparently I'm the only one who won't be tuning in next week! Obviously, the Chi McBride 'proximity' line was hilarious, but the rest was just too cutesy for me. The kissing monkeys, the simultaneous self hand holding- ugh. And I found the repetetive language thing totally annoying! How many times did we have to hear about the Boutique Travel Travel Boutique? Anyway, it was worth checking out, but not my cup of tea- or slice of pie.
kytiara7 kytiara7 8 years
I totally loved Pushing Daisies! I had my husband futzing with our TiVo for 20 minutes making sure we got the HD version for next week, though!
meijan415 meijan415 8 years
so glad to know that they are fellow 'wonderfalls' fans here!
heroic heroic 8 years
i think it's a novel, beautifully rendered show. i'm just curious about how long they can sustain the overall magical vibe of the show. i hope they can do it for a long time. :D and kristin chenoweth = adorable!
mallomar mallomar 8 years
caernarvan- I loved Wonderfalls too! Hope this show gets love from a wider audience though so it sticks around. I just wish I didnt have to wait til next week to watch it again. Oh and Lee Pace is so freaking cute! And them fake holding hands at the end! And just everything. So good. :)
demeter demeter 8 years
Oh..my favorite line was when Chuck and the two guys were sitting in the booth and Chuck says 'You can't just touch someone's life and be done with it'. And Ned goes really fast 'Yes I can. That's how I roll.' It was so funny how he said it and the expression on his face. It was hilarious.
demeter demeter 8 years
I loved this show. It was so awesome and I loved that I was so easily relatable to Chuck. I have a hard time liking or even tolerating main female characters, but I loved Chuck. She was adorable.
musiclvr224 musiclvr224 8 years
californiagirlx7, it made you think of Big Fish also? I thought I was the only one who thought that lol.
californiagirlx7 californiagirlx7 8 years
I liked the pilot a lot. My only complaints are that it seemed more like a movie to me rather than a TV show, and it was really depressing (more so than I thought it would be). I mean, he can't touch his dog or his soulmate, and he killed Chuck's dad and re-killed his own mother. Overall, I thought it was a good show, though. I liked the scenery, it made it seem a Tim Burton film (like Big Fish).
Adrianne Adrianne 8 years
I wasn't too crazy about the Pilot. Granted, the effects were amazing. I'll just have to tune in next week to see if its worth watching. My favorite line that made me LOL'd!: "Bitch, I was in proximity!"
askmetostay askmetostay 8 years
love it....chi mcbride is wonderful, and since reruns of my fave "boston public" has been taken away....i'm glad i have my fix again! and this show is so super-cute. chenoweth is a doll, the girl who plays chuck reminds me of zooey deschanel who i also love...and the narrator....the narrator is the best!! it's so cute how eveything is down the last second....no one is 45, they're 45 years, 37 days, 22 minutes and 15 seconds.
Princesskitty22 Princesskitty22 8 years
Love it love it love it. It's a great example of dark humor. And it's so creative and quick.
mrspiven mrspiven 8 years
i've never enjoyed a pilot episode so much! i thought it was wonderful. it was such a pleasant surprise for me to see chi mcbride in the show, as if i didn't like the show enought. i can't wait for next week.
Francesca-Fiore Francesca-Fiore 8 years
You're right about Kristen Chenoweth, she is teensy tinsy and I love her to bits. I was really impressed with this show! I don't know that I would have made a point of watching it if it hadn't been for Buzz's high recommendations, but I'm glad I did, and I definitely will again!
musiclvr224 musiclvr224 8 years
Thanks Buzz. She is funny but sometimes her voice gets on my nerves lol.
silverpenny013 silverpenny013 8 years
I just watched it online (I caught bits and pieces last night) on abc.com and I fell in love!
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