2 items from 2015
Producing a TV series with original songs in every episode is always an ambitious undertaking. And precious few of them have succeeded.
With “Galavant,” which debuted Jan. 4 in the “Once Upon a Time” slot, ABC jumps back into the risky musical business with some very high-powered talent. Billed as “a medieval musical fairy tale,” it offers a handsome knight (Joshua Sasse) who teams up with a princess (Karen David) to win back his true love (Mallory Jansen) from the evil king (Timothy Omundson) who has married her.
The songs are by eight-time Oscar winner Alan Menken, best known for his Disney scores “The Little Mermaid,” “Beauty and the Beast” and others; and lyricist Glenn Slater, Menken’s songwriting partner on Disney’s “Tangled” and, »
- Jon Burlingame
Owing a strong debt to Monty Python and a lesser one to spoofs like “When Things Were Rotten,” “Galavant” largely overcomes the challenges that have traditionally bedeviled TV musicals with rambunctious energy, cheeky lyrics and music, and — significantly — a half-hour format, thus condensing the need to create songs into a manageable task. Granted, this ABC series is so unlike anything else on the network’s lineup that the only lead-in the network could think of, ultimately, was itself, airing back-to-back episodes. Whether this inspired silliness has legs beyond musical-theater geeks and TV critics is anybody’s guess, but “Galavant” hits the ground running.
From the opening number (and good luck getting the Alan Menken-written title tune out of your head), “Galavant” serves notice that the derring-do will involve more word play than swordplay, as the narrator sings, “Now at last begins a true adventure. Epic, wild, a real butt-clencher. »
- Brian Lowry
2 items from 2015
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