In praise of Olive Snook

I love the fall. It’s one of my favorite times of the year. A part of this goes back being in school, and having the sense of a fresh start. I like the idea of leaves crunching underneath my feet. I like the idea of shopping for new clothes and getting out sweaters. I like the idea of Halloween. (Though, to be fair, I haven’t dressed up since being Vampire Willow in college. About three people at the party got it, but it was still fun to plan out a costume, wear leather pants and leather boots, dye my hair bright red, and go around saying, “Bored now” to people who didn’t know what to think.)

In addition to school and leaves and costumes, one of the biggest reasons I love fall is because it’s the start of a new TV season. These last two weeks have been a feast for the TV lover. New episodes of The Office, How I Met Your Mother, Heroes, Chuck, House, Desperate Housewives, Brothers and Sisters…the list goes on and on. (No I don’t watch ALL of those shows. I have a hard enough time just keeping up with Monday night TV.)

Tomorrow night marks the return of one of my favorite shows from last year – Pushing Daisies.

If you aren’t familiar with the show — and there is a good chance you may not be, as it only got in nine episodes before the strike sent it to Hiatusland — here’s a helpful video to catch you up:

(Thank goodness for that. Jim Dale is a much better recapper than me.)

A few weeks ago, season 1 came out on DVD, and I got a refresher course of my own. I remembered the show, and its most pertinent details, but had forgotten a lot of the episodic plot lines.

Here’s what I discovered: I still like the show a lot. It’s not in my top 10 yet, but I do really enjoy it. The best part of the show, for me, isn’t Ned the Piemaker, nor is it Chuck. (Who, quite frankly, grates. She’s just a little too precious and quirky, even for this show. I hope they fix that this year.) It isn’t even Emerson Cod’s love of knitting (though…awesome) or the Darling Mermaid Darlings increasing pie addiction. No, what makes the show for me is one Miss Olive Snook, played by the luminous Kristin Chenoweth.

What started out as a character with pretty much only one defining trait — she is in love with Ned — has turned into a multi-faceted, fascinating supporting role. Throughout the course of nine episodes, we learn that Olive used to be a jockey (a nod, I’m sure, to Chenoweth’s small stature). We learn that her pajamas match her bedspread. We learn she’s not as dumb as she may at first seem. We learn she’s very sweet — faithfully taking pies to Chuck’s aunts and trying to get them out of their house. Most important, we learn she is a good friend, even to Chuck, whom she should hate for stealing the affections of The Piemaker.

Kristin Chenoweth took what was a minor character in the pilot (Pie-lette) and turned Olive into a vital member of the cast. Pushing Daisies wouldn’t be Pushing Daisies now without Olive Snook. In fact, if Chenoweth ever leaves the show, I’ll probably stop watching.

Here’s hoping Olive will continue her friendships with Chuck, The Aunts and Emerson in season two. Watching her interact with the others truly makes the show for me.

Plus, you know, she sings.


While reading reviews of yesterday’s HIMYM (That’s How I Met Your Mother for those not in the know) I was reminded of one of the great moments of the series – Barney’s Top 10 List, and NPH’s dead on impression of David Letterman, complete with, well I don’t want to ruin it for you, but listen for it at the end. So, to file under “Things that are awesome” (and I promise they won’t all feature NPH, this is just odd coincindence), here’s my Featured Video of the Day. Make sure you watch to the end, as after the initial bit, they do an additional bit that did not originally air.

Barney’s Top 10.

Happy (belated) new TV season!

3 thoughts on “In praise of Olive Snook

  1. Yes, you caught me. Brothers and Sisters was in my head because you were watching it the night before. 🙂

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