John Walker's Electronic House

Sex And The Northern Exposure Theft

by on Sep.15, 2006, under The Rest

This is a reminder to watch Northern Exposure.

Because it is September, this means it’s time to watch the pilots of every new series starting in the US Fall schedule. Graham’s written splendid reviews of them on his blog, and I think I’m probably going to do something similar because I’m a lame-o copycat. There’s good words to be said about Heroes, Shark and Raines, some good words for Jericho, and ridiculously jubilant cheers of joy for Studio 60 On The Sunset Strip.

But to start with, I’d like to express my blinking-eyed horror at Men In Trees. There’s no reason to have thought it would be any good. It’s created by a lead writer from Sex And The City, so obviously I didn’t expect anything. But included in that list of anything I didn’t expect was for it to be almost a scene-for-scene rip-off of Northern Exposure.

Anne Heche plays a relationship coach who’s about to get married, BUT YOU’LL NEVER GUESS WHAT?! He’s cheating on her! Get back on your chair. She learns this while on a press trip to a backwoods small town in the wilds of Alaska. Where she is greeted by an enthusiastic young man who has a radio show on the town’s small radio station. She then finds the local bar is filled with local crazy characters and odd drinks, where she meets a guy who she assumes is flirting with her, but he claims he’s not interested at all, but they clearly both fancy each other. After discovering that people here have never heard of a soy latte!!!, she finds that where she’s staying does not feature all the big city creature comforts she’s used to, and then there’s a raccoon in her closet! Who should come along to sort the situation out, but the guy from the bar!

And then there’s no flight out of there, and… oh god what are they doing?

Except, of course, it has absolutely no charm whatsoever. It’s a miserably unfunny mess that so brazenly rips off the pilot of Northern Exposure that you can only think the writers have hoped that everyone has forgotten it by now and wouldn’t notice. Now imagine the vapid men-writing-how-they-think-women-think drivel of Sex And The City’s relationship whine-fests, before then stealing yet another character or scene from one of the best television programmes to have existed. Full of lines like, “The truest thing I know about relationships is, sometimes we don’t know anything at all,” it’s about as big of an insult as you could imagine.

So in conclusion, don’t forget to watch Northern Exposure.

7 Comments for this entry

  • Lewis

    Did you not like Walk The Line? I found it to be surprisingly excellent.

  • admin

    I arsed that bit up. I intended to write that its being the work of a SATC writer led me to expect nothing, and then later added in the Walk The Line director bit so it was accurate as to its creators, but forgot to arrange the sentence accordingly. Anyway, I’ve decided accuracy be damned, and removed it. I’ve not seen Walk The Line.

  • maddy

    Doesn’t sound as good as Desperate Housewives.

  • The_B

    On a slightly unrelated note:

    John – is it true that Brian appears in Broken Sword 4?

  • MHW

    I momentarily thought you meant Graeme as in Payne. Which would be a relief as it would mean he’s not dead.

  • Space Monkey

    Do you know what happened to Kelly Vivanco’s Patches?

  • Lain

    Thanks for that— saved me, what? 40 minutes * 12 or thirteen first season episodes— not to mention the space on my DVR.

    But then again, it’s got Anne Heche in it.

    I certainly wouldn’t have watched it.

    As a matter of fact, there was as much chance of me watching that…
    as there is of me watching a Jessica Lange movie marathon, or Anne Heche and Ellen DeGeneres getting back together.


    nice site btw.