The show opens up in Times Square on New Year's Eve. Bobby Cannavale's Cupid, or possibly just Trevor Pierce (which isn't even his real name), and an Irish musician named Dave, are fiddling with the light bulbs in a sign over the New Year's ball (you know, the thing that drops at midnight, not a dance). Does my wording read kind of cluttered, there? Good, because that's how the show feels at times.
Anyhow, under the big "2009" Trevor and Dave have changed the bulbs so the text read: "Holly I'm here." When the cops are called to the scene to get the vandals, Trevor is thrilled. See, Dublin Dave met a New York girl during the last 20 minutes of her vacation in his fair city, and so he up and crossed the ocean, which might be an even bigger deal on this show than it would be in real life. He came to New York to find her, without even knowing her last name, which is treated as far less impossible on this show than it would be in real life. Whatever. Dublin Dave is sure Holly's the one. Trevor figures if Dave gets arrested for their vandalism, it's more free publicity for his labor of love. But Dave's visa has expired (the immigration document, not the credit card) so he has to make himself scarce before the fuzz arrives. Trevor's glad to take the fall for him, in hopes that his own arrest can help them locate Holly.
Trevor ends up in a mental hospital, because he insists he is Cupid a.k.a. Eros, who has been exiled from Mount Olympus until he matches 200 single humans into 100 couples who are in twu wuv. He used to be able to "knock that out before lunch" but that was before his bow, arrows and magical powers were confiscated by the (other) Powers That Be. In the hospital, his case is assigned to Dr. Claire McRae, a psychiatrist who seems to be on the outs with the hospital administration for not believing in… psychiatry. So she's a Scientologist Psychiatrist? Under Claire's care, Cupid never stops claiming to be Cupid, but eventually he's allowed a competency hearing. During it, Cupid lifts his "Trevor Pierce" moniker from the (literal!) writing on the wall, and is then deemed fit for release, provided Dr. McRae continues to treat him and monitor him for signs that he's becoming a danger to himself or others.
On the outside, Trevor joins Claire's group session for singles, not because she asks him to, but because what better way to meet a bunch of singles, complete his task and gain re-admittance to Olympus? He brings Dublin Dave to group, and then brings the group to the Mariachi-Karaoke bar (yeah, you read that right) where Trevor bartends, in hopes of getting the word out about Dave's search for Holly. He also enlists the help of reporter and group member, Madelyn, to interview Dublin Dave, to get the Holly-quest even more publicity. And even people all the way over in Dublin (who have their TV sets off because it's ass o'clock in the morning there, when this show airs here, and it's probably not airing there, anyhow) can see that Madelyn and Dave are going to fall for each other, and that Holly will show up, and throw a wrench in the works. And so that happens. What I didn't see coming though, is that Cupid would fail to see the love blossoming before his eyes, and try to steer Dublin Dave clear of Madelyn, while Claire would take the role of romantic in this story, and be allowed to be right about some things having to do with human emotions.
When Trevor realizes Holly is not right for Dave, he joins forces with Claire to get Dave back together with the heartbroken Madelyn. As soon as it works, Dave's promptly arrested by INS, and deported to Ireland. It's up to Cupid to convince Madelyn to "boldly go" er…for it, and fly to Ireland and claim her man. Which she does. Yay! Back in Trevor's apartment, we watch with him as one of the beads on his billiards tally thingum moves to the other side, signifying that either he really is Cupid and the gods have judged Dave and Maddie to be a true match, or that Trevor is delusional. Note: either way, it's still up in the air how sound we are for watching this. I'll be back on the flip side with the full weecap. 'Til then, I'll be working on my fan letter to Rob Thomas. Dear Rob, I thought our story was epic, you know? You and me. Spanning years. Continents. Lives ruined. Bloodshed. But nobody ever mentioned a word about crossing oceans. I… um… really don't like flying. This could be a problem.
Back in ancient times in TV Land (10 and a half years ago) - a then little-known TV writer, Rob "Not the Singer" Thomas, had a little TV show on a little network called ABC, which in my darker moments I prefer to call Already Been Canceled, but I digress. That little show was Cupid and was either about the (fallen) Greco-Roman god of erotic love (a.k.a. Eros and Amor), or a completely delusional maniac. Of course, remembering my mythology (and its contemporary, my adolescence) I am beholden to point out that the two need not be mutually exclusive. Plucky little Jeremy "The Thermometer" Piven starred in the title role, opposite the oh-so-lovely little Paula "Back, Show Killer!" Marshall, who played a psychiatrist and possibly Cupid's love, Psyche. It ended badly, as these things often do -- in cancellation, that is. Much that once was -- is lost. For none now live who remember it, except its die-hard fans who are all, "No Piven? No Marshall? No way!" And I understand. One of my friends Lisa (syntax intentional; I've considered writing a Lisa-based parody of "The Daves I Know") still mourns it, all these years later. I watched that little show Cupid only a few times, but in my defense, it only aired a few more times than a few times, and I had my second child smack dab in the middle of its run, so I was a little busy. If only it had aired at 2:00 AM, I would have been there with bells on, or at least a nursing bra.
History became legend, legend became myth, and for 10 and a half years, the little show passed out of all knowledge [(if you don't count YouTube) because they've never released it on DVD -- and what's up with that?] until, when chance came, it ensnared a new bearer. Er...well, not exactly. It ensnared an old bearer. The original bearer. Oh crap, I'm dropping the italics.
The point is, suddenly, ABC and the CW were both begging Rob Thomas to re-make the show he did a perfectly fine job of making for them the first time, and I guess he looked at ABC's offer and said, "Why the heck not?" whereas I would have said, "Why the heck, now?" but again, I digress. When I learned I'd be covering this show for TWoP, my first instinct was to hunt down the original series and re-watch it. But then I got distracted, so now I'm telling people that I made a professional decision to cover the reworked Cupid free of any bias that might stem from my opinion of the original series. That's my story, and I'm sticking to it. So, and without further ado, let's get to this new show which sounds vaguely familiar...