Tuesday, October 4, 2011

'Party Down': The Little Show That Should've

Back in the late summer of 2010, I discovered the show Party Down as I was lazily flipping through the hundreds of options on my cable provider's OnDemand menu. I recognized Adam Scott from The Aviator and decided to give it a shot. I was addicted instantaneously. I watched all twenty episodes in a matter of a few weeks. After I'd finished with the two short seasons, I went on a search to figure out when I could tune in for the next season. Much to my surprise, I found that Starz had canceled this wonderfully dark and quick-witted comedy.

A little background on Party Down. Premiering in March of 2009, the half-hour show is about a Los Angeles catering team, made up of aspiring actors and writers. Each episode revolves around an event the team is working and the shenanigans each member ends up getting tangled up in. It was created by Rob Thomas (90210), Paul Rudd (I Love You, Man), Dan Etheridge (Biodome), and John Enbom (Veronica Mars). The show was directed by Bryan Gordon (Curb Your Enthusiasm) and Fred Savage (It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia). The recurring characters included some recognizable actors:
With all of these big names associated with the show, it came as quite a shock when Party Down didn't get a chance at a third season. According to this article, the ratings simply were not there. While the show may have had staggering potential, I think there are two main reasons why Party Down never got to come full term: Starz and censorship. Starz is a little-known channel that comes up with very few contending programs in comparison to its ever-growing rivals, HBO and Showtime. The viewership for anything on a channel like Starz is low from the get-go. And Party Down is too graphic for the likes of NBC or FOX, which has to cater to parents' wishes to keep their children naive. We are still living in an time where censorship and media regulation laws rule, often leaving winning shows to die in the outer limits of obscure cable channels.

But there is hope on the horizon! There have been rumors circulating all over the internet these past few months, hinting at a potential Party Down full length feature. Rob Thomas has even gone as far to say that his people are well into negotiations for a movie deal. Along with all of the buzz from Arrested Development supposedly being picked up for a few more episodes AND a movie deal, this could make for some interesting coming years.


'Party Down' Reunion on 'Children's Hospital':


To read more, try these links:
The Complete Oral History of Party Down - details.com
Interview: Lizzy Caplan on the Party Down cancellation - hitfix.com

1 comment:

  1. Morgan, I just began watching this show and I am absolutely in love with it! Everyone in the cast is amazing and the dialogue is just great. There's not one moment where I'm NOT laughing.