"And Salt the Earth Behind You" Blew It - In a Way You Won't Expect
First off let me admit I'm an old guy, which will explain the somewhat minor thing that bothered me about this episode. Overall I have to say I like the show, though I'm almost certainly not the target audience for it. I do have some of the usual complaints about it - actors that don't look remotely as young as they are supposed to be (watching them ride bicycles as their normal mode of transportation makes me cringe), and a story line that portrays high school kids in a unrealistic way. Sure, there are kids like this, but not nearly as many as this show would have you believe. Still, I do like it overall, mostly because the direction is somewhat unique. As in how the directors format the show, not the way it progresses. The writing is good, too, as is some (not all) of the acting.
So what bothered me about this episode in particular? Again, probably a minor thing to most people. But not me. In 1970 Leon Russell released a song he wrote named "A Song For You". It was covered in this episode by Donny Hathaway. He did a terrible job with the song. The original had much more emotion to it, with lyrics punctuated at just the right time. Hathaway's version is bland, missing the emotion of the song, and missing the emphasis at the right time with the lyrics.
I don't know if the producers couldn't get the rights to the original, if they wanted a more "modern" version of the song, if it was made to fit the narrative on the screen at the time, or there was some other reason for it. But I found it distracting, because Hathaway just doesn't do the song justice. Leon Russell's version is moving, Hathaway's is dull. Sorry, Donny.
Speaking of "target audience", I wonder how many viewers even know that song is nearly 50 years old?
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