Before Samantha Who?
signs off after its first season tonight, I thought I'd take a minute to heap some praise on the wonder that is Sookie. (Yeah, I know her character here is Dena, but she'll always be Sookie to me). She absolutely hands down is what makes this show one of the funnier new arrivals this season. Samantha? Well, she's suffering some brain issues so is very conflicted and sometimes amusing but often achingly awkward. Andrea, she's just bitchy. But Sookie, ah sweet Melissa McCarthy, has brought such depth and dimension to a character that could be kind of one note that I've found myself caught up under her spell. While some (and I'm looking in my boss Dan's general direction) used to "Sookie" through any Gilmore Girls
scenes with her in them claiming they were just expository, on Samantha Who?
, I'm often tempted to fast-forward just to get to scenes with her. Especially if it involves her hanging out with Sam's mom (the always awesome Jean Smart). On Gilmore
, McCarthy was always the cute best pal who was always there for a shoulder to lean on, solid advice and comfort food to dole out. Here she's the slightly desperate former best pal trying to take advantage of a traumatic situation in order to ingratiate herself with her old friend. Sounds lame, but the quiet desperation of Dena the dog-lover who wants so badly to be part of the popular club, is just downright fun to watch. In fact, her relationship with Sam and Andrea's boss, is way more engaging than whatever is happening this week between Sam and Todd. The writers have done an excellent job working in her character development in little asides. All of her twisted bad relationships and obsessions just slip out in the midst of casual conversation and McCarthy's deftly timed delivery really sells it.
Also, I'm pretty ecstatic that this curvy gal, with more to love, isn't getting pigeon-holed as the one desperate to land a man (that's the skinny-but-bitchy Andrea), or just the comfortable confidant, she's flirty, fun, kind of kooky and you never know what is going to come out of her mouth next. Though chances are, it will make you laugh.