Having grown up with literary aspirations of my own, I have an inclination to gravitate towards entertainment centered around writers (i.e. Castle, Murder, She Wrote). I have a suspicion that Netflix caught on to this pattern because it recently suggested Showtime’s Californication to me.
Well played, Netflix.
Tom Kapinos’ creation is rapidly nudging its way to the top of my all-time favorite television shows list. There was a slight shock while adjusting to David Duchovny’s transition from the goofy yet lovable Fox Mulder (X-Files) to the rarely celibate and charmingly dysfunctional Hank Moody. Yet, the show’s writing and fast-paced dialogue offer a breath of fresh air from the stale haze of monotony that modern television so frequently emits.
The characters have layers, for God’s sake! Just like the non-fictional people of the real world. The actors do an outstanding job of conveying the depth of their respective characters despite the show’s deceptively shallow premise. Duchovny especially shines as he manages to take the potentially tired story arc of a writer struggling with content production and alcoholism and makes it a tale of edgy renaissance.
Be warned, though, it is not a show for those who are easily offended or have delicate sensibilities. Luckily I am neither a prude nor easily offended. My only regret with finding Californication is that I found it seven seasons too late. Needless to say, I will continue watching and appreciate the spark of television genius while it lasts.