Creative Control

Miscellaneous Mental Musings of an Emerging Artist

“Don’t act like you don’t know.”


Finished all available episodes of BoJack Horseman last night and highly recommend it. While there have been hundreds of Hollywood satires before, what’s unique about BoJack is not simply its complicated and bizarre world in which humans interact every day and matter-of-factly with anthropomorphic animals, but in its willingness to treat even its most outlandish characters as deep and multi-dimensional.

The main subversion that BoJack¬†traffics in is the concept of “resolution”–its titular character is a washed-up sitcom star and the show itself employs the 25-minute sitcom format, but the series goes out of its way at times to avoid resolving its most pressing issues within single episodes. The continuity and minute details are astoundingly rendered, with some gags appearing throwaway at first landing much later only if you happen to be looking at the right part of the screen when it happens. Sometimes a catharsis won’t come until after a few episodes, sometimes after a full season, sometimes after multiple seasons, and sometimes the situation might not seem it will ever resolve at all. Sometimes it resolves to the satisfaction of characters who don’t deserve resolution and other times to the satisfaction of those who you realize later were the ones who truly needed it. The show is willing to present BoJack as toxic and lay out the reasons he became so without absolving him of that toxicity–terrible choices are made time and again, the consequences are often scarring and permanent, and BoJack himself does not grow more lovable for his errors–hell, sometimes he doesn’t grow in any way at all.

Also: Funny as hell.

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This entry was posted on August 17, 2016 by in Critique, Television.
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