Pushing Daisies: The Complete Second Season - Blu-ray Review - CLIPS ADDED!
By Jeff Swindoll Jul 25, 2009, 15:27 GMT
This forensic fairytale follows Ned, a young man with a very special gift. As a boy, Ned discovered that he could return the dead briefly back to life with just one touch. Now a pie maker, Ned puts his ability to good use, not only touching dead fruit and making it ripe with everlasting flavor, but working with a private investigator to crack murder cases by raising the dead and ...more
If only the pie maker really had the power to raise the dead with a touch, he might touch this fine series and bring it back to life. Alas, the pie maker is unemployed thanks to the writer’s strike as many good shows were given the axe thanks to those events.
The facts were these. Private Investigator Emerson Cod (Chi McBride) has a thriving business. He’s in the money because he rarely fails to solve a case. His ace in the hole works at the Pie Hole bakery in the form of Ned (Lee Pace). Ned has a singular gift in that he can raise the dead… for a minute at a time. So when somebody is murdered how can you go wrong waking up the corpse and asking “who killed you?”
Ned had a crush on his neighbor’s daughter and when she dies and Cod investigates the case he revives “lonely tourist” Charlotte “Chuck” Charles (Anna Friel) and now she has to hide her new second chance at life from her aunts Vivian (Ellen Greene) and Lillian (Swoosie Kurtz).
Waitress Olive Snook (Kristin Chenoweth) hides the fact that she loves the pie maker and the murderers try and hide their crimes but with Cod, Ned, and now Chuck on the case they have little chance of keeping their crimes hidden. Just as season one was picking up steam and audience the dreaded writer’s strike of 2007 (the death knell of many a show of that year) cut the season short and the show would never recover.
All but three episodes would air during the second season and those saved episodes would finally reach the airwaves before the show had its last gasp. The show was utterly charming, but with a touch of strangeness that I’m sure kept some of the audience away. What did keep the interest and tickle the funny bone was the cast of quirky, odd characters played with gusto by the cast.
Our trio of Chi McBride, Lee Pace, and Anna Friel were a powerhouse of character and add support from Chenoweth or the cast of other characters and you’ve got gold. Of course, the show was lovingly narrated by Jim Dale as well. Season two would have death by bees, the murder of clowns, deadly nuns, rent-a-friend, Norwegians, and a host of other oddities.
We also get a peek at Ned’s dad, played with panache by George Hamilton in a cameo, and the return of Charles Charles (Josh Randall), Chuck’s deceased father. The entire series is wrapped up in a much-too-quick dénouement at the end of the final episode, leaving much more mysteries unanswered, and I’m very sad that it’s gone. No coming back from the dead for it.
Pushing Daisies is presented in a 1080p high definition transfer (1.85:1). Special features are presented in standard definition and include the 13 minute “Master Pie Maker” about series creator Bryan Fuller.
Next is the 5 minute “From Oven to Table” looks at the special effects of a specific episode. The 8 minute “Secret Sweet Ingredients” tackles the show’s score and music. The 4 minute “Add a Little Magic” looks at adding a CGI rhino to an episode and the challenges of doing so. Sadly, that’s all. I really wished for more since this is the last gasp of the show. Alas no.
Pushing Daisies was a breath of fresh air – like the smell of a newly baked pie. The writer’s strike only drove a stake through the heart of this quirky series (as well as many more). I’m happy that the entire second run is now out on Blu-ray, but had hoped for more special features since this might be the last time we see a release.