Pushing Daisies, Season 2

Well, I’m just as sad as I thought I’d be. I’ve just finished the second season of Pushing Daisies, which means I’ve finished the entire short-lived run of Pushing Daisies, which means I’ve seen every dreamy glance from the Pie Maker and every hopeful sigh from the girl named Chuck and every upturned eyebrow from Emerson Cod and every giggle from Olive Snook. What a magical, incredible, show—and, as many have said before me, what a pity that it ended so soon.

Pushing Daisies is one of those rare shows that makes your whole body smile, and not just your mouth. It’s something about the serendipitous combination of bright colors (never blue, though, as I learned on Wikipedia), wit-chocked literary dialogue, beautiful actors, whimsical cases, and hilarious guest stars—and it’s also that certain element that Bryan Fuller, and whatever the hell is going on in his head, adds, that makes it truly magical. Coeur d’Coeur is an incredible imaginary place. I hope Disneyland pays tribute to it at some point.

Anyway, back to Season 2. Pushing Daisies managed to cover a lot of territory and tie up a lot of those pesky loose ends, so I’m guessing they knew well before the end that the end was near. Olive Snook, for example, spent a few-episode stint in a nunnery, where she attempted to get over Ned, fell in love with Ned again, and also found out a bit more about Lily than she had bargained for. And Emerson Cod fell in love with one of the ladies from “Bitches” (last season) whilst also making progress with the whereabouts of his long-lost Lil’ Gumshoe. Ned and Chuck, meanwhile, invented a few more contraptions to make their relationship less weird: a plastic sheet that separates them in bed but still allows them to spoon, gloves so they can hold hands, plastic wrap so they can kiss, proxy-hands (Emerson’s) so they can comfort each other, that sort of thing. It’s all so very sweet and innocent between them because it has to be, but the cheekiness (namely, from Olive) comes from other sources.

I was so thrilled to see so many of my favorite actors pop up in this season—everyone from Michael Hitchcock to Eric Stonestreet to Autumn Reeser to Wendie Malick to Willie Garson to Stephen Root made an appearance, further underscoring how appreciated this type of show was in the acting community. But, of course, it would have been nothing without the core four (or six, if you include Ellen Greene and Swoozie Kurtz as the wacky aunts). Lee Pace is… well, at the top of my list, as you may well know, of Hot Men. He is quite beautiful. But he’s also so innocent. He might even be the most hopelessly romantic character on TV, and therefore the most unrealistic, but he’s certainly a joy to watch. His delivery of his lines is always so matter-of-fact and charming and glib, and even thought he’s the only one who wears black and white, he brightens up the screen whenever he’s on it. That is, unless, Kristin Chenoweth is sharing it with him. “Itty-bitty,” the moniker given to her by Emerson Cod, is right. She is tiny but she packs a lot of punch, for lack of a better term. Her singing, crime-solving, and habit-wearing this season actually earned her an Emmy, one of the show’s few triumphs in a sea of cancellation blues. Speaking of Emerson Cod, Chi McBride fits in SO WELL with this group of people. Seriously. I do think he is the glue that holds the show together, even if it’s a romance, because he’s the “sane” one in this ridiculous group of already relatively sane people. He recognizes more absurdities than most, he puts things together, and he always sports the pimpest shirt and ascot, too. And then there’s Chuck. Anna Friel’s voice is different with an American accent. It’s softer, higher, and it draws you in. It’s no wonder that she and Lee Pace have such incredible chemistry. Who wouldn’t, with talent and beauty like theirs?

I cannot emphasize this enough: Watch this show. It’s on Netflix Instant, and you’ll be instantly delighted.