TV Review – The Hollywood Reporter

You could assume that a gift to look into the future would make dating easier: you could avoid the time and grief of investing in flirtations that lead nowhere, or you could double down during tough times with full confidence that your efforts will pay off. According to Maggie, you would be wrong. Hulu’s Half Hour revolves around a chipper but emotionally reserved 30-something psychic (Rebecca Rittenhouse), whose glimpse of a possible future with an adorable boy named Ben (David Del Rio) only complicates her love life — especially when Ben goes to the another moves out half of her duplex with his high school sweetheart, Jessie (Chloe Bridges).

However, it doesn’t take a fortune teller to imagine the jokes that follow MaggieThe amiable tone lands more sympathetically than irresistibly. To put it in terms, the love-seeking heroine might understand: this series is a fun summer affair, not a once-in-a-lifetime love.

Maggie

It comes down to

No once-in-a-lifetime love, but a nice weekend away.

Broadcast: Wednesday, July 6 (Hulu)
Form: Rebecca Rittenhouse, Nichole Sakura, David Del Rio, Leonardo Nam, Angelique Cabral, Ray Ford, Chloe Bridges, Kerri Kenney, Chris Elliott
creators: Maggie Mull, Justin Adler


Despite its magical-tinged premise, Maggie tends less towards Harry Potter or the wife of the time traveler then friends if Phoebe’s psychic powers were confirmed. Or perhaps a more accurate comparison would be: How I met your mother, with Maggie’s visions taking the place of Future Ted’s wise narration. As with that series, the protagonist’s romantic fate serves as the setting for a sunny hangout comedy that addresses the challenges of young(ish) adulthood in general, focusing on the zigzag journey across the destination—while we’re still there. to remind that we to be heading for a specific, grand, happily ever after destination, so don’t worry.

And just like in How I met your mother, the romantic angle can be both a draw and a drag. Rittenhouse and Del Rio share a pleasing chemistry that makes it easy to picture the two of them together for the long haul, albeit without the urgent sexual tension that would turn their will — they don’t want to — into a truly dreamy affair. More fun is the unwavering devotion between Ben’s uptight sister Amy (Angelique Cabral) and her more laid-back partner, Dave (Leonardo Nam), who have been inseparable since they literally ran into each other at Burning Man, and who are so in love with each other they can’t even handle it. their wedding vows work without making themselves sobbing.

On the other hand, it can be hard to ignore the grittiness of the plot machinations that keep Maggie and Ben apart. They do a particular disservice to Jessie, who has been relegated to the role of a human obstacle whose anodyne attraction is at one point compared to ketchup. Maybe the writers (led by creators Maggie Mull and Justin Adler) are wary of letting the public fall in love with her too much, otherwise we’ll side with when Maggie tries to take her man, or maybe they just weren’t interested. in filling out a character they don’t plan to keep too many future seasons.

Indeed, Maggie turns out to be most interesting if it’s not focused on love at all, or at least not the romantic kind. The richest and most rewarding relationship is between Maggie and her childhood BFF, Lou. In part, it’s because Nichole Sakura (Super store) is blessed with the vivid presence and precise comedic timing to frame her character multiple episodes before anyone else does; Lou is the only one to feel fully formed from the jump, and the premiere just clicks into place with her introduction.

But it’s also because their friendship feels lived, in a way so few of the others do. It’s not just that Maggie and Lou go way back to high school, as we see in an episode going back to the girls’ prom. It’s that neither of them seem more like themselves than when they’re together. In one scene, they placed expired Bugles on their fingertips to snap together like claws. It’s silly and totally pointless from a plot perspective, and it’s the funniest and most heartfelt moment of the entire season.

As regards Maggie‘s most unusual twist: While the series features a handful of storylines about the hows and whys of Maggie’s powers, or about her place within a larger community of psychics — including her diet-obsessed mentor, Angel (Ray Ford), and her teen would-be mentee, Abby (Arica Himmel) – her abilities largely serve as an adorable twist on more grounded and familiar storylines about the anxieties of young adulthood. Her visions, accurate but often incomplete, confuse as much as they clarify. She could take a peek inside herself while she’s nurturing about a baby, but no context as to whose baby it might be, and then frantically spend the rest of the episode trying to see more of the future so she can find out.

From time to time, Maggie complains that her gifts make her feel out of place, and for good reason: dates dismiss her gift as a delusion, acquaintances become annoyed by her well-intentioned advice, and her doting friends can only go so far understanding her unique experiences. But Maggie’s journey is ultimately one of discovering that she’s more like the rest of us than she knows. As anyone who has ever entered a clearly doomed relationship or fallen in love at first sight can attest, insider knowledge has its limits as a shield against vulnerability, insecurity or even heartbreak. The only way out of your 30s is through — even for psychics who know exactly what’s coming.

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