Hello November! Given it’s the ninth, I’m sure you’ve already met the month head on. That is, unless you’ve been living in a hole for, like, ever. Coincidentally, there’s a show about that very subject on Netflix. It’s from the minds of Tina Fey and Robert Carlock. If you missed out on this streaming hit, no worries. The second season doesn’t kick off until March 2016, so you’ve got a few months to enjoy Indiana Mole Woman Kimmy “Kimmy Smith” Schmidt’s shenanigans in the Big Apple.
A half-hour comedy series about a woman with a middle school education and an indomitable optimism/naiveté trying to start life anew in New York City.
# of Episodes: 13 ( Picked up for season 2, releases March 2016)
Time/Episode: ~ 25 minutes
Total Series Runtime: 330 minutes (5 hours, 30 minutes)
Things to Know: The perfect prescription for those suffering from 30 Rock withdrawal. If you weren’t a fan of that show’s quirky characters and wild storylines, you best have your condition diagnosed by a doctor (one other than Dr. Spaceman, of course).
Required Prerequisite: None
Four women are celebrating Christmas in an underground bunker when they are rescued by the Feds. They learn the man holding them, the Reverend Richard Wayne Gary Wayne, has been lying to them for fifteen years about protecting them from a so-called apocalypse. After a Today interview, one “Mole Woman,” Kimmy (Ellie Kemper), realizes she doesn’t want to return home to Indiana and be forever seen as a victim, so she decides to stay in New York where no one will look at her funny.
I can’t picture anyone more perfect to play Kimmy than Ellie Kemper. She combines a wide-eyed optimism with cluelessness and a steadfast fortitude to endear Kimmy to us viewers. Her flimsy grasp on contemporary culture doesn’t deter her and makes for one fun learning curve. At her side, well at least when opportune for himself, is her roommate and aspiring Broadway performer Titus Andromedon (Tituss Burgess). I can’t even put into words how phenomenal Burgess is in his role. He’s a brilliantly insane character in his own right. It’s a sort of blind-leading-the-blind with Titus and Kimmy, except the leadership role flips frequently.
UKS wouldn’t be a Tina Fey creation without Jane Krakowski who portrays Kimmy’s employer, the sickeningly rich Jacqueline Voorhees. Krakowski nails the haughty trophy wife just as she did with 30 Rock‘s Jenna Maroney. Like Jenna, Jacqueline has her own insane back story. To top off the show’s insanity, Carol Kane joins the cast as Lillian, landlord to Kimmy and Titus. UKS also employs a handful of cameos, with Fey herself appearing in the latter episodes. I will not say anymore, because the sheer awesomeness of the appearances should not be spoiled for any newcomers.
If you haven’t guessed, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt doesn’t just break the bounds of silliness, it tears them to pieces and uses the shreds to make papier-mâché walls in Lillian’s basement. From sparkly Skechers to a VHS of Major League to a dolphin in a bow, Kimmy and Titus have some of the wackiest adventures you’ll find on a live-action show nowadays.
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt ranks high on my “bingability” meter. I stopped myself after four or five episodes to give the jokes a chance to sink in and my muscles a chance to stretch. Truth is I could have easily sat right there, muscles be damned, and burned through all thirteen episodes from start to finish. I don’t know about you, but to me, a show can’t get any more bingable than that!