The Washington Post newspaper, Style Section, January 2012
I am the last one who should be writing this article. Honestly, I don’t know how it’s happening. I am the one, for instance, who never watched TV’s Seinfeld until it’s third season. It’s a tradition. I am never on top of any fad or prevailing fancy. I am always after the fact, getting into a social phenomenon after the public’s tide of interest has crested. It regularly seems when I finally wake up and get on board, looking around to say, “Hey, everybody, I get it,” nobody’s there. They have all moved on to the next great allure and I have no idea where they are or what that might be.
Why in the world the touting of the off beat series Portlandia would fall on my shoulders is beyond me. Surely EVERYONE in the world has seen it as I’m always the last to know. But, for some reason, maybe I’ve turned over a new leaf or crawled out of a new rock. Maybe my family just didn’t know any better, because if you’d told me to watch it, I probably wouldn’t have, resisting the urge to be like everyone else, until the moment had peaked.
Maybe when we went to pick a movie from NetFlix and serendipity landed us on the unknown title of Portlandia, we didn’t resist because we hadn’t heard of it at all. There was nothing to fight, so we effortlessly moved to Portland. But, now that I’m ahead of things for once, I look around and nobody’s here. Nobody seems to have heard of Portlandia and I am ahead of the pack.
Fred and Carrie live in LA but find themselves in Portland, Oregon
Big “duh,” but it took me a while to realize Portlandia is a series of skits compiled by two people, Fred and Carrie, who play an agile mix of characters in every trendy, hip and robust scene imaginable. All of today’s pertinent topics are covered and each character they play relates somehow to someone you know, or an acquaintance you’ve met. No one is spared, but their gracious inclusion speaks to their love of humankind while forcing everyone to laugh at themselves and everyone else.
Toni and Candice know the rules and apply them universally.
The Portlandia selection on NetFlix streams Season 1, so there is no waiting and you can enjoy it right away. The only problem is that watching one episode, you will probably want to watch another. Like we did. We stayed up late on Friday night and then started watching again at breakfast Saturday morning. It was heaven and addictive, and as Toni says, “Addiction isn’t funny.” But, of course, Portlandia addresses that current wrinkle in society, watching several years of a series show in one sitting, just watching one more episode each time.
Warning! When you start to stream Portlandia, this will happen.
Well, so…we’re hooked. So much talent and so much fun. Maybe it won’t become “your thing” like it has ours, but I hope that somewhere in this, you were able to crack a smile.