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Dan For Mayor, “Awkward Speedoo” (2.03)

Mike (Benjamin Ayres) gives Dan the stinkeye while being driven on a speedoo by a cop.

A review of the Canadian comedy’s newest episode, written by Carolyn Taylor and directed by David Weaver, after the jump…

That was fun.

This week, Dan For Mayor didn’t necessarily elicit much in the way of laughs, but they’ve definitely started to find a way to use their cast in a way that isn’t frustrating. I really enjoyed this episode. Both the police speedoos plot, and the Claire plot, were good uses of the characters and good clean fun.

Pitting Dan up against a powerful antagonist was a great idea, and police chief Paddy O’Malley is a great addition to the world of Dan For Mayor. Watching the hapless but well-meaning Dan come up against the dirty head of Wessex’s police was great. And Dan takes what the drama staple for this plot is (getting someone with a wire to get the dirty cop to confess) and brings it down to Dan‘s level. It’s small, elegant, and works.

I like that, in this beginning, Dan’s targets are small and he’s having a lot of trouble getting things done. That’s how it would be, and until he starts getting ahold of his position, that’s all he can handle. Plus, it gives him a chance to go one-on-one at a time, like with O’Malley here. I also like the progression this season: he spent the first episode trying to do what was easy and fumbling all over it by going about it wrong, he spent the second episode trying to do the right thing and fumbling it by taking the easy way out, and here he does the right thing and finds a solution to his problem. He just doesn’t pull it off. Having a Dan that takes things seriously means that things have stakes. We could easily have not cared about Dan’s  mayoral campaign, or even have rooted against him. However, if he fails here, actual people get hurt, and the stakes ramp it up well.

This episode also used the cast well. I didn’t think putting Claire and Jeff in a plot together would work, but they bounced off one another decently, and their scheming was amusing in a way, say, Claire’s fumbling over starting a PR company wasn’t. I hated Claire’s parents in previous appearances, and still do, but they were used sparingly enough to alleviate my frustrations and serviced the plot nicely. And Fern, who degrades the lines an ep you give him, was perfect in the handful he was given.

The show’s improving, slowly but surely. I expect, by the season finale, I might laugh more than once or twice an episode…

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  1. […] Dan For Mayor, “Awkward Speedoo” (2.03) This week, Dan For Mayor didn’t necessarily elicit much in the way of laughs, but they’ve definitely started to find a way to use their cast in a way that isn’t frustrating. I really enjoyed this episode. Both the police speedoos plot, and the Claire plot, were good uses of the characters and good clean fun. Read more. […]



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