January 2, 2015 at 11:51 am #340195
Galavant premieres this Sunday at 8PM EST on ABC.
The series will follow the adventures of Galavant, a dashing hero who is determined to reclaim his reputation and his “Happily Ever After” by going after the evil King Richard, who ruined it the moment he stole the love of Galavant’s life, Madalena. The episodes will chronicle Galavant’s journeys (and the twists and turns that go along with them) through musical numbers composed and written by Alan Menken and Glenn Slater.
Enjoy this animated theme song video — http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DZvldziC134
Alan Menken, get ready to enjoy EGOT status.January 2, 2015 at 11:53 am #340197
TV Review: ‘Galavant’
January 2, 2015 | 07:45AM PT Brian Lowry TV Columnist
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.” Then again, this is a show where in a later episode characters will argue about finding an apt rhyme for “sarcasm.”
Our intrepid hero, the swashbuckling knight Galavant (Joshua Sasse), has his beloved Madalena (Mallory Jansen) kidnapped in the opening moments by the lustful King Richard (Timothy Omundson). Yet when Gal seeks to engineer a daring rescue, he’s crestfallen to discover his lady fair has actually chosen money and power over the whole true-love thing.
Flash ahead, and Galavant has crawled into a bottle to drown his sorrows, before being given a new purpose in the form of a quest involving the lovely Princess Isabella (Karen David), whose family has been taken prisoner by none other than Richard. Madalena, meanwhile, torments her husband, who at one point seeks advice from his trusty guard (Vinnie Jones) on how to be manlier.
What ensues, in the six episodes previewed, cruises along in somewhat serialized fashion while pausing for plenty of nonsense, from landlocked pirates (headed by “Downton Abbey’s” Hugh Bonneville) to Galavant’s joust with another knight (John Stamos) who specializes in “Yo momma” jokes, which, he’s told, are so 12th century. (Another “Downton” denizen, Sophie McShera, also turns up as a guest.)
Written by Dan Fogelman, directed by Chris Koch and featuring songs by Menken and Glenn Slater, the show — which draws its beautiful locations from shooting in Wales — remains consistently bawdy and frequently clever, such as a musical group of clergy in a later installment who sing “Hey, hey, we’re the Monks.”
The cast (which also includes Luke Youngblood as Galavant’s squire) is uniformly good, although the portrayal of Richard as a cruel yet foppish and sex-starved figure inevitably yields a lot of broad camp that risks becoming irritating. By contrast, some of the anachronistic jokes work surprisingly well, including a debate over the merits of zippers.
It’s too bad that the concept is so incompatible with anything else in ABC’s lineup, which explains the decision to air the series in “Once Upon a Time’s” slot while that show takes a breather. The scheduling actually produces some awkwardness, such as a lyric that says, “Tune in for next week’s show,” which actually begins immediately thereafter.
While we’ve come a long way since “Cop Rock,” trying to sell a mass audience on such a proposition remains dicey, as does sending up a genre of movies that probably peaked during Errol Flynn’s heyday. Heck, to millennials, even Mel Brooks’ various parodies are so last generation.
Nevertheless, give ABC credit for taking a stab at something different (along with a nod to entertainment chief Paul Lee’s British roots), and at least creatively pulling off the first stages of “Galavant’s” journey. None of that, of course, suggests the series will be a smash, but based on first impressions, it won’t be a “Smash” either.
TV Review: ‘Galavant’
(Series; ABC, Sun. Jan. 4, 8 p.m.)
Filmed in Bristol, U.K. by Abbey C Studios for ABC Studios.
Executive producers, Dan Fogelman, Alan Menken, Glenn Slater, Chris Koch; co-executive producers, Kat Likkel, John Hoberg, Casey Johnson, David Windsor, Kirker Butler, Kristin Newman, Scott Weinger; director, Koch; writer, Fogelman; music, Menken; lyrics, Slater; camera, Chris Seager, John Pardue; production designer, Jeff Tessler; editor, David Bertman; casting, Kate Dowd. 30 MIN.
Joshua Sasse, Timothy Omundson, Vinnie Jones, Mallory Jansen, Karen David, Luke YoungbloodJanuary 2, 2015 at 11:57 am #340198
Godwilling! Plus, it actually looks hystericalJanuary 2, 2015 at 12:58 pm #340199
I was actually just thinking about making a thread on here.
Yeah, this looks really good! What could be better than Weird Al singing to lyrics written by Alan Menken? Answer: nothing!January 4, 2015 at 9:06 pm #340201
I just finished watching the first two episodes…
Oh my God!
Galavant is hilarious! I seriously don’t think I laughed THIS MUCH over a show, not even at American Dad!, a wry, clever satire of medieval fantasy shows but it also has comedy that works on every level. And the music! I seriously don’t think I hated one song so far, and I can’t stop getting them out of my head. Menken is on fire!
I don’t think I’ve seen my mother laugh so much during a movie or T.V. show in a long, long time.January 5, 2015 at 9:42 am #340202
The last song (“You’re not the worst”) had me dying. John Stamos was ok but overall I kinda felt let own by him. Joshua Sasse is perfect as Galavant and the guy who plays the King is my second fav on the show (I forgot his name).January 5, 2015 at 4:46 pm #340203
I think that like with The Neighbors, these guys had a great, terrific idea and then they screw up here and there so much with the writing and the cast that it never quite comes together. The one place where I think it was 100% perfect from character, to actor, to writing, to comedy…was the Chef. And he’s not even close to being an important part of the show. I laughed with him and a lot but nothing else was quite as good.
Joshua Sasse is great as Galavant although he failed in a couple of scenes here and there between both episodes, the King is also quite good. Galavant’s servant (?) really reminded me of Ellis in Smash. I was annoyed.
Vinnie Jones needs to start showing that he’s aware of how awful this is for him, that way one could enjoy his part a bit more. He needs to play this parody of himself and the lazy casting more.
The show looks great, the songs are great, voices are good, but again, like with The Neighbors, something is off. And like with The Neighbors, I’ll keep watching to see if it gets better.January 5, 2015 at 7:49 pm #340204
Menken is trying too hard to get this emmy lolJanuary 14, 2015 at 4:49 pm #340205
Haters gonna hate but I love this show.
Which song do you guys think is most likely for a nomination?
I want the opening song “Galavant” and the “You’re Not the Worst Thing Ever” to get in as they are the best so far (after the first four episodes).January 14, 2015 at 5:03 pm #340206
So I finally caught up on the two episodes I missed.
Two Balls: Didnt love this episode. It had one really interesting song (“Dance Until You Die”) but it didnt have any wow moments for me. My grade C+
Comedy Gold: My fav episode so far. A+. All the songs were catchy as hell.January 16, 2015 at 8:57 pm #340207
Which song do you guys think is most likely for a nomination?
I want the opening song “Galavant” and the “You’re Not the Worst Thing Ever” to get in as they are the best so far (after the first four episodes).
Unless they changed the rules Alan Menken and Glenn Slater can only pick one song to submit.
Look at Smash for example. Marc Shaiman and Scott Wittman chose “Let Me Be Your Star” for the first season and “Hang the Moon” for the second season.
I assume Menken and Slater will pick “Galavant”. It’s the opening number and sets everything up like a pilot episode of a series.January 18, 2015 at 7:20 pm #340208
The last two episodes were great! I think that love song in the second episode should be the one Menken submits for the Emmy. It’s amazing!
And in the 30 seconds that Weird Al was singing lyrics written by Alan Menken, I think there was world peace.January 18, 2015 at 9:44 pm #340209
Menken doesn’t write the lyrics, Glenn Slater does.