If you’re a fan of TV shows, you’re probably aware of the many popular shows from the 2000s. From The Office to Lost, there were plenty of hits that won over audiences and critics alike. However, there were also some shows that flew under the radar, never quite receiving the recognition they deserved.
One such show was Pushing Daisies, a whimsical yet macabre series that aired on ABC from 2007 to 2009. While the show received critical acclaim during its brief run, it never quite caught on with audiences in the way that other shows did. Here, we’re taking a closer look at Pushing Daisies and why it’s one of the most underrated shows of the 2000s.
Pushing Daisies tells the story of Ned (played by Lee Pace), a pie maker with a unique ability. Ned has the power to bring dead things back to life with a single touch, but there’s a catch: if he touches the living thing a second time, it dies again, and cannot be brought back. One day, Ned uses his power to help solve a murder, and soon finds himself partnering with private investigator Emerson Cod (Chi McBride) to solve other crimes.
While the premise of Pushing Daisies is certainly unique, it’s the characters that really make the show shine. Ned is a quirky, awkward protagonist who struggles with his unusual gift and the limitations it imposes on his relationships. Emerson is a gruff, no-nonsense investigator who provides a perfect foil for Ned’s quirkiness. But it’s the show’s supporting characters who really steal the show, from Olive Snook (Kristin Chenoweth), the eternally optimistic waitress who harbors a crush on Ned, to Chuck (Anna Friel), Ned’s childhood sweetheart and the murder victim who sets the show’s plot in motion.
One of the most distinctive aspects of Pushing Daisies is its style. The show is visually stunning, with bright, candy-colored hues and whimsical, almost fairy tale-like sets. The show also features witty, rapid-fire dialogue and a quirky sense of humor that is both charming and macabre. While the show deals with some dark subject matter, such as murder and death, it does so with a light touch that doesn’t take itself too seriously.
The Critical Response
Despite its uniqueness, Pushing Daisies never quite found a large audience during its run. However, it was critically acclaimed, receiving numerous Emmy nominations and winning several awards, including Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series and Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series (for Kristin Chenoweth’s portrayal of Olive).
Why It’s Underrated
As mentioned earlier, Pushing Daisies failed to find a large audience despite its critical acclaim. There are likely a few reasons for this. For one, the show’s quirky style and offbeat humor may not have appealed to a broad audience. Additionally, the show’s time slot changed several times during its run, making it difficult for viewers to find and follow.
Despite its lack of popularity during its initial run, Pushing Daisies has developed a dedicated fanbase in the years since it went off the air. Many viewers have discovered the show through streaming platforms like Netflix and Hulu, and its unique blend of romance, mystery, humor, and stunning visuals has earned it a well-deserved cult status.
Even though Pushing Daisies only lasted two seasons, its impact has been felt in the years since its cancellation. Many shows since then have borrowed from its distinctive style and quirky sensibility, from the whimsical tone of Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland adaptation to the brightly colored visuals of Wes Anderson’s films. While the show may not have found lasting mainstream success, its influence can still be seen in popular culture today.
In the end, Pushing Daisies may not have been a hit with audiences during its initial run, but its unique style and memorable characters have earned it a dedicated following. With its blend of romance, humor, mystery, and stunning visuals, the show is a true gem that deserves to be remembered alongside the other great shows of the 2000s. So, if you haven’t yet discovered the show for yourself, now’s the time to give it a chance. Who knows? You may just find yourself falling in love with Ned, Chuck, and the rest of the delightful characters that populate the world of Pushing Daisies.
And who knows? With enough buzz, maybe we’ll finally get that long-awaited revival that fans have been hoping for.