The Cambridge Geek

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

Okay, I confess, I started watching this when I was stuck in a hotel room away for work and didn't want to have to put any thought into what I was watching. Netflix said "do you want some crack? Television crack? We have so many things you might like. Welcome to Netflix. You'll never leave. How about a nice programme about a bunker that doesn't have the Nazis in it for once? Yes, you like bunkers, don't you. Click on this. Go on, click it."

I may have been a little more sleep-deprived than is really healthy.

Anyway, that's how I met Kimmy Schmidt. And she is very funny.

I'm actually still playing binge/catch-up, as it's up to three seasons now, and I'm still only two thirds of the way through the second. I suspect that most people who might be interested are already aware. Still, just in case you're not, here's a bit about it.

Kimmy Schmidt was kidnapped at the age of fifteen, by a slightly crazy end-of-the-world nerd who convinced her (and three others) that the world had ended and they had to stay in the bunker to avoid being burned in lakes of fire. For fifteen years. At the age of (nearly) thirty, she's rescued by a corpse-finding pig, and decides that all she wants to do is try and move on with her life.

So, she moves to Manhattan. Into a "street-located maisonette, in a vibrant neighbourhood". I leave translation of estate agent speak as an exercise for the reader. Here, she encounters Titus Andromedon, an actor/singer, desperate to make it on Broadway (currently he's up to singing waiter) and Lillian, a slightly drug-addled crack-dealer/landlord. They fight crime. Okay, maybe not. They try and survive in a world gone mad? Better.

Obviously, the phrase I am contractually obliged to use here is "fish out of water". Kimmy has no idea what an iphone is, or what hipsters are, or how to not look insane. I would say that comedy mostly derives from her inability to deal with everyday problems, but I don't think anyone on this programme has an ordinary problem. They're all either poor little (billionaire) rich girls, or werewolf doctors. (Speaking of poor little rich girls, Mrs. Voorhees ("no first names darling, they're so vulgar") is a wonderfully sarcastic git. With more layers than tiramisu.)

It's silly. It knows it's silly, and it uses it to tell some surprisingly deep stories. You're going to mainly come to this for the laughs, with an excellent line in sharp observational, (I know, I know, Tina Fey, sort of her thing), but there's much more going on than that, such that I'm slightly more addicted than I should be. Probably have to just finish binging it and get out the other side.

One for fans of unconventional shoes and elf costumes.

Highly recommended.

Tagged: TV Comedy Family/Relationships Netflix Fiction