Pilot Reviews Santa Clarita Diet

Santa Clarita Diet 1×01 – So Then a Bat or a Monkey

"Anything else we should know, not that we know anything."

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This is the kind of show that would have fallen apart if it weren’t for the two stars at its center.

I can’t remember the last time Drew Barrymore was cast in such a memorable role, but she’s absolutely perfect here as a frazzled housewife whose life gets thrown for a loop after she mysteriously gets turned into a zombie. The contrast between both Sheilas is beautifully realized, and that’s all thanks to Barrymore’s nuanced performance.

 Equally terrific is her husband Joel played by Timothy Olyphant. Indecesivive and not exactly the bravest of guys, he loves his wife and would do anything to protect her. Olyphant gets some meaty material, particularly when he implodes at a toaster and starts randomly grinding in a supermarket (probably my favorite visual in the pilot).

The rest of the cast is also solid with Desperate Housewives‘ Ricardo Chavira appearing as the couple’s bully neighbor, and a terrific guest-starring turn by Nathan Fillion (this guy just oozes hilarity). Suffice to say, I’ve very excited to see more.

Barfs & Bits

– Love the opening title card. Simple and effective.

– I don’t think I’ve ever seen anyone barf as much as Sheila did and it was a horrendously shocking moment. Also, did she barf out her heart? What was that?

– Sheila’s reinvigorated sex life is hilarious, especially how she constantly wants head.

– Joel smokes pot. I’m feeling like this is going to be a plot point going forward.

– Too funny: Joel and his daughter fainting at the same time.

– Sheila snacking on a snail (“crunchy”) was a hoot.

– I genuinley started loughing out loud when Sheila gleefully began eating Gary’s fingers after he almost raped her. And the final shot with Joel walking in on Sheila munching on Gary’s intestines was just perfect.

Diet Digs

Joel: What are you saying? She’s a zombie?
Eric: I don’t like that word, it’s inherently negative.

Dan: Eric doesn’t own a football, or anything else that would make him come outside.
Joel: That’s exactly what he said only with less implied criticism.

Maya: I can’t believe you went and bought yourself a Range Rover.
Shiela: Well I’ve been wanting one ever since this morning.

Joel: Sweetheart you bought a car and now you’re grinding on the neighbors.

Sheila: (to Gary) I feel like whatever I say is just going to mean you push harder against my vagina.

Gary: You ate my fingers!
Sheila: I do not hate your fingers!
Gary: “Ate”, ate my fingers.

Conclusion
A quirky and darkly amusing dramedy. This is one confident pilot.

Nad Rating
A-

One comment

  1. I recently went through the entire season of this show. I found it to be a darkly comedic delight. The balance of humor and horror reminds me of Bryan Fuller's work on the Mockingbird Lane pilot. I find Timothy Olyphant hysterical as the husband. It's interesting seeing him play the opposite of an alpha male. I also like the chemistry between him and Drew Barrymore. They play off of each other well.

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