In the age of reality television, when animal fur and exorbitantly wealthy housewives seem to rule the small screen, it’s refreshing to happen upon a show that has neither of these. Or if it does, it’s with tongue-in-cheek humor on the part of the showrunners. On April 15, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, the brainchild of SNL alumni Tina Fey and Robert Carlock, reemerged for a triumphant second season.
Ellie Kemper’s Kimmy is just as vibrant and ebullient as she was in season 1, but oftentimes it’s her roommate Titus (Tituss Burgess) who steals the scene. (SPOILER ALERT) Whether he’s cleaning out his spectacular wardrobe and finding a construction worker boyfriend in the process, or performing an elaborate dance routine with his ex-wife on a subway platform, his theatrics always manage to entertain while never quite crossing into the territory of obnoxious histrionics.
Jacqueline Voorhees (Jane Krasowski) also returns for the second season, revealing herself to be more than the shallow, materialistic housewife she presents to the world. Her more detailed storyline was part of a bigger change that allowed the show to develop all of its main characters more fully. Before the pilot episode, the producers and writers expected NBC to air the program, but when the network decided to pass, they were stuck with the standard 21-minute format that the networks prefer their shows to stick to.
Knowing right off the bat that Kimmy would be released onto Netflix for its second season allowed the writers to make the episodes a little longer and the season a more unified whole. Instead of the more disjointed storylines they would have had to use if an episode was released weekly, the whole-season-released-at-once style of Netflix allowed the writers to add more dimension and details to the characters’ lives.
Another welcome change to the show comes in the form of Tina Fey herself, in the role of Kimmy’s alcoholic therapist, Andrea. With an entirely different personality that emerges when she drinks, Andrea is yet another colorful addition to the Kimmy clan. Unsurprisingly, hilarity ensues. The predictability of its humor somehow doesn’t detract from the charm of Kimmy’s unrelenting earnesty, though.
And for anyone who has yet to begin the first season–not to worry. This review doesn’t spoil the high-speed comedic dialogue or the wholesome appeal that’s made Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt a hit among critics and Netflix-addicts alike. A