January 2013 Archives

"Washington Heights" Quick Review (Episodes 1 & 2)

| No Comments
Okay, here it is. The "Washington Heights" (reality show on MTV) review. I was able to watch the first two episodes last night.

The good:


-Has a lot of Spanish-speaking Dominican abuelas who know how to get their cook on. 

-Stunning commercial break bumpers/scene change cutaways. Good stuff. 

-The show, in general, is Latino > other, which is long welcomed.

-Shows off Inwood & Washington Heights' geography.

-A good highlighting of Washington Heights & Inwood businesses. 

-Shows off how much parkland is uptown. Like 1/2 the scenes in episode 2 are in parks. 


The bad:


-The plots are glacial.

-Slow character development, and stories.

-The kids are "nice" people. But nice isn't good TV. I'm at a conflict, because I'm really happy with how all are portrayed as far as the neighborhood is concerned, yet recognize that this show is doomed if these kids don't start stepping up the drama. And drama doesn't have to mean violence/fights. But we need some type of conflicts that engage the audience. 

-Doesn't recognize Inwood directly, other than landmarks, as far as I can tell. But a lot of it seems to take place in Inwood.

-Not really clear to people who aren't from NYC that the downtown scenes at the art store and poetry club aren't uptown. 

-Jimmy takes the Henry Hudson Parkway to the Saw Mill, to 87 across the Tappan Zee.... Really what you should do from Washington Heights is take the upper level of the GWB, then immediately get on the Palisades to 87, or if not head across Route 4 until you hit 17, and then start north to 87. But this kid takes the Saw Mill?


In total: 


-The exterior shots, cutaways, and so on gives our neighborhoods a good look.

-The characters seem to care a lot about each other, and the neighborhood. That is endearing, and resonates well.

-Fun to watch for locals. Spotting familiar sights could make a great drinking game for residents. First to spot it is safe. Everyone else takes a swig.

-Sadly the show, so far, is boring....


It's a slow show as of Ep. 2. Way more drama / plots / etc. needed between the kids. And the potential is there. 


I hope it does well, it's great for the area.... Really not clear to me how this lands with the rest of the country.