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I'm Dying Up Here - Midnight Special - Review

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This week on I'm Dying Up Here, the comics of Goldie's got a new shot at performing on national television, but it didn't go so well for any of them.

I'm Dying Up Here is still trying to find its marks. Its second episode is overall well-done but the show is still struggling with pacing, making the hour-long episode a bit of a drag. While The Tonight Show is still putting a hold on featuring Goldie's comedians after Clay's death, she finds them another opportunity on a show called Midnight Special. Meanwhile, since the pilot introduced Bill and Cassie's relationship, it appears to reach a new level in this second episode when he refers to her as his "girlfriend." But between them, things get quickly as cringe-worthy as the opening credits (awkward close-ups on mouths laughing is just weird). Bill's frustrations even brings him to blow up his chance at being on TV and results in an even more uncomfortable situation between him and Cassie. If the series' cast remains convincing and the humor lands, the storylines are already starting to multiply, with some less interesting than others.

Thankfully, the episode is not all gloom and difficult situations. Eddie and Ron, who are still living in a closet and cannot afford food, decide to participate to a game show in hopes to make a little bit of cash. This allows for some sweet and funny scenes in the episode, helping the struggling duo to bring a bit of light and hope in a show that, so far, has been more depressing than actually fun to watch. All the characters' battles are already making it more of a drama than a "dramedy."

This episode also follows Adam in the role of Goldie's handyman. She has him paint her daughter's room in a series of scenes that tend to slow down the episode but reveal a bit more about the two characters. If the show is struggling with pacing, it is at least making good character development choices, which will hopefully pay off.

One aspect of the comedians' relationship with Goldie is actually very well explored in this episode. When Goldie is having her comics perform for the Midnight Special folks, things get very heated between Edgar (Al Madrigal) and Sully (Stephen Guarino). The two get into a fight after the show, and the situation quickly escalates towards poop pranks in the following day. This forces Goldie to get involved in her "kids"' fight and to play the mom who has to tell her children they are being ridiculous. The scene where she reprimands them is a well thought-out scene that highlights the mother figure that Goldie is in the show.

So far, I'm Dying Up Here is maintaining a good course. We are still getting to know the characters and understanding who they are, so the show still has a lot of potential. Its pacing is a little wonky, to the point where the efficiency of the hour-long format can be questioned for this show. Let's give it the benefice of the doubt and see if it can keep up with it in the coming weeks.

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