IHAO on ... Derek

I had originally planned to review a film I received in the mail and watched this weekend with my first hard earned donated funds!  But these two shows came across my way in just the past few days, and I had to touch on them immediately.

A mockumentary is a comedy artform of telling a comedy from the view point of a documentary crew.  It is all the rage now to replace the sitcom format.  The Office, Parks and Rec, Modern Family, they all use this technique to varying degrees.  And I have two I want to share with you.  Both on Netflix right now.  Today, I want to talk about Derek.  Tomorrow, I'm going to talk about Short Poppies.

Derek is another outing in the format by the man who brought it to the front and center of television viewing, Ricky Gervais.  I've seen quite a bit of his stuff.  Loved some (Life's Too Short), didn't care for others (the original Office), and hated others (An Idiot Abroad).  So I looked up Derek ... it has just terrible reviews.  Just the worst.  Go take a gander at all the things said about it that just the wikipedia page shares.  Did you take a look?  Ghastly stuff.

Pokemon humor.  :)

On a whim, I gave it a chance anyway.  The schtick is that Derek is handicapped/autistic/something and works at a care home for the elderly.  And the first episode ... it is very hard to find the words.  I loved it, I hated parts of it, I laughed, and I openly wept at the incredibly touching finish.  So I watched episode two.  I just keep watching, and I am just infatuated.  I love watching Derek, and Hannah, and Dougie.  I love seeing them just try to make life a little better for their little corner of the world.  Every episode takes me through every emotion.  It is funny, it is poignant, it is charming, it is sad, it is wonderful.  I am in love with this show.  It is profoundly well made from a character place, and is unabashedly positive in its mindset.

There are minor technical things that could be changed or be improved upon.  But they are minor.  They are not worth mentioning, is what I'm saying, and I'm working hard to make a living of mentioning those things.

I implore you all, just watch the first episode.  It is odd, and different, and foreign ... and ultimately, if you have fallen in love with this story, with these characters, with what you are seeing, then I think you will be happy moving forward.  If you are intrigued, if you are curious about the nature of Derek and what makes him so unique, then I think you will be happy moving forward.  If you laughed, and smiled, and maybe even teared-up or cried, then I think you will be happy moving forward.  If you couldn't help but focus on the documentary format, or the not quite that good acting from some of the cast, or the lack of just jokes on jokes, then you'll know, and you can move on.  But I hope this show touches you profoundly.  I hope you can revel in the joys of this show.  I could not be more pleased with my viewing experience.

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