Comedy Tonight: A Review of Galavant

Way back three weeks ago, ABC showed a new promo about a musical named Galavant. With Alan Menken’s songs, how can this girl go wrong by being interested in Galavant? Plus, it had a lot of real cool guest stars. Concept was intriguing by far. Sweet! I tuned in every week. Now here is my critique about the musical called Galavant.

I’ll admit that while I am a sucker for a good musical, I found myself having mixed feelings about Galavant after watching the whole first season. First of all, I thought it was going to be a mini-series. I’ve watched a show where every episode was a musical episode before. The format is a great idea on paper, but there’s one major problem: Musicals eventually have to end at some point. The idea of musicals is to combine storytelling and songs and most of the musicals I love have a wonderful self-contained story. Even musicals like Songs of a New World and Working are considered to be self-contained in spite of the episodic songs because they revolve around a common theme, which you can compare to a short story anthology.

What I liked about Galavant was how it took ideas and concepts that were familiar to fairy tales and lighthearted musicals and turned them on their heads. The titular hero goes from being a self-centered jerk to someone who puts others first. The damsel in distress, Madalena, turns into an opportunistic, Machiavellian woman when she marries King Richard. The evil king gains a lot more sympathy as he is not as ruthless as he seems. The squire is a great source of comic relief and the second princess, who becomes Galavant’s traveling companion, shows that she can hold her own by her wits and cleverness.

I liked some of the episodes I saw more so than others. The problem is that the episodes don’t flow together all that well. I also didn’t like the finale as it was clear that it was more interested in getting a second season than keeping everyone in character or having anything make sense. If you want spoilers, you can find them elsewhere.

What I will say is that I liked the acting overall. Joshua Sasse can’t carry a tune, but he gave his best. Mallory Jensen had the most range in the show overall and she made her character’s transitions fun to watch. I was always surprised at how devious Madalena could be. The same can be said for Timothy Omundson, who you may recognize as Detective Lassiter from Psych. He was always fun to watch and he balanced the transition from seemingly ruthless tyrant to unexpectedly sympathetic villain really well. And as stated before, Luke Youngblood was great at providing comic relief, but also showed Sid’s vulnerability. But, by far, my favorite character is Princess Isabella, played by Karen David. She had the most to work with. She wasn’t just a sidekick. She was the brains of the group, but also hid a lot of feelings. It’s what the writers did to Isabella at the end of the first season that made me disappointed with it.

Overall, I’m glad I gave Galavant a chance, but I wish that they made it a mini-series as opposed to a comedy musical series. I hope that things turn out for the best.

How Job Interviews Are Like Theater Auditons: A Short Play

The names in this screenplay have been changed to preserve the confidentiality of the involved parties. Not based on actual events.

ACT 1

Scene 1

At rise:

 

It is a gray, rainy afternoon. A young woman, MARIA, enters S.L. dressed in a long black trenchcoat and black ankle boots. She runs quickly to the building’s entrance and greets the front desk receptionist, JOANNA, a slightly older woman.

MARIA

Hi. I’m here for the job interview.

JOANNA

Might I ask who you talked to?

MARA

The manager? I forgot her name.

The office manager, DONNA (late 20s, early 30s), stands up from behind her desk.  

DONNA

That would be me.

Donna leads Maria up to a conference room that looks more like an empty stage. Maria stands center stage and takes off her trenchcoat, revealing a silvery grey blazer over a green pinstripe shirt and black trousers. 

DONNA

So you’re here to interview for the assistant position of our children’s department. Please explain to me why you think you’d be good for this job.

MARIA 

It’s been a while since my last interview. To be honest, I want this job because I’m saving for grad school and I want to keep working here even after I get in. I’ve been making the most of my time by volunteering with children at the local community center. I work as a tutor, helping them out with their literature, math, and even foreign language. I’ve been doing that for the past few months. I love working with children. The best thing about working with kids is seeing the passion they have for learning anything. People think that kids are stupid and they hate learning. I think they just hate the way things are taught. Keep them engaged and immersed in activities and they learn as they go. I actually directed a couple of skits as part of my job. It was chaotic and the kids weren’t exactly Oscar-winners, but I loved them anyway. All the world is a stage, you know. In fact, this whole interview is a lot like an audition for a play. I read over the things you require me to play in this role and do my best to show that I can play this part. I have to be flexible, on my feet, ready to improvise at a moment’s notice. I have to take orders from the director, or in this case manager. I have to deal with a hectic schedule and whatever I get paid, I’ll take. Only instead of memorizing monologues, I have to monologue on the spot with answers that will hopefully cater to whatever you’re looking for. Funny thing is that after every interview I go to, I listen to A Chorus Line’s “I Hope I Get It.” And unfortunately, I end up not making the auditions. But you know what they say, fall seven times, get up eight. The show must go on. Thank you.