So, I’ve gone from my longest watch straight to my proportionately shortest watch. This show has five seasons at 12 or 13 hour-long episodes each, and I’ve stayed up late and angered my parents by sitting around in my room in order to finish it in about nine days. I watched Breaking Bad’s first season in pretty much a single seating, but that was just seven episodes. No big deal. The reason for that was that it was a fantastic show, and it holds true for this one as well.
Six Feet Under revolves around a family-owned funeral home somewhere in California. That is, it centers on the family and their relationships with each other and their friends/enemies/loves/etc. In fact, all of these traits are often present in the same person. Everyone in the show is flawed to varying degrees, which sometimes made it difficult for me to like them depending on the flaw. I guess a show this close to my pessimistic view of reality just makes me mad.
Of course, there are good times along with the bad, which makes it watchable. The actors is superb, the writing is great, and it doesn’t rely on cliff-hangers nearly as much as most other dramas I’ve seen. A pretty cool trick they use extensively is the dream sequence, which almost always includes a conversation with a deceased loved-one. It’ usually made obvious that it’s not some mystical communication with the dead; rather, it’s all in the mind of the dreamer and a product of their emotional state. These mind-ghosts are a great way to get inside the heads of the characters without crappy voiceovers or whatever. Sometimes they’re funny and sometimes they’re pretty horrifying, but they always get their point across.
Every character in the show can be analyzed to hell. If I had the inclination I could probably write essays on them for quite some time, but I definitely don’t. The common theme for them is a seemingly self-imposed spiral to destruction. Everyone makes bad decisions over and over. Usually everything looks great for a little while and then just goes to crap. Cue the next disaster cycle. Repeat until the sappy montage at the end of the series. It was good to have a positive resolution.
It was a good watch, and I’m glad I watched it. Now I’ll be quite happy to find something light-hearted to enjoy.