'Cashmere Mafia' recap: An offer we can refuse?

Cm_lThe claws came out in the second episode of Cashmere Mafia, revealing there might be some fresh blood in the veins of this tepidly-received primetime soap-comedy. Lucy Liu (center) is at her best when she’s being a little catty and Liu’s Mia got her meows in a few times last night. She admitted to the group, albeit under her breath, that Miranda Otto’s Juliet is a "little bit" of an ice queen (which is like telling Britney Spears she has a little bit of a crazy problem). Later, she stepped up and fired her onetime mentor (Californication‘s Damian Young, left) while basically telling Caitlin (Bonnie Somerville, right) — whose am-I-gay-or-not? confusion led her to crash an art opening for Mia’s advice — to zip it. Bring it, Lucy! And she’s got the most fierce wardrobe of all the gals.

Another peek of frisky promise appeared when Frances O’Connor’s workaholic mom Zoe received a custom-designed "Working Mommy Bear," complete with hands-free phone earpiece, from her kids. Too bad the writers had to take it one step too far with the bear’s "I can’t talk. I’m on a conference call" voice recording. The bear itself wasn’t enough of an insult? We had to be hit over the head with it, like we’re accosted by the show’s overbearing soundtrack, which seems to run behind almost every scene. Cue quirky score; there’s something ironic coming! Cue serious score; there’s a bit of drama! Turn up the quirky score; we’re moving on!

Over-writing and insulting gimmicks like that leave me wondering ifthis show’s worth my commitment. Especially whenhunka-hunka-burnin’-love Jeremy Sisto’s walking the beat with JesseMartin over on Law & Order! Speaking of which, the Mafia could use some more manly men like those two. Juliet’s cheating scoundrel of a husband Peter Hermann has the power (he’s a L&O: SVUalum afterall), but not bland Bobby, the business-school classmateshe’s pondering taking as her revenge-sex lover. And Zoe’s architect ofa husband, Eric, is Gossip Girl cute; I’m not quite buying Zoeand Eric as a pair. I’m also not not getting any vibe from Caitlin andher girl-toy. Am I the only one?

What I can buy after this episode is that, as the show’s creators and stars have said, Cashmere Mafia really isn’t trying to be Sex and the City.I can see glimpses that it’s trying to move beyond that with thestay-at-home mom vs. working mom storyline that came and went and willhopefully come back, and with Juliet pondering whether a bad marriageis better than no marriage at all. I think with the kooky score,picture-perfect stars, and soapy storylines, what ABC’s really aimingfor is a Desperate Housewives and the City. What about you all?Do you plan to give the show another date, or will you have to ignoreits calls? And as for the velour-track-suited mom who came onto Zoe’shusband and bought her children the bear, would you have let her offwith Zoe’s lame "Don’t hit on my kids"? Surely the money and the powerthese ladies are supposed to have could buy more than that!

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  • Nose

    I do have to call you on the Lucy Liu wardrobe comment…didn’t you see that atrocious pink top and skirt they had her in last week? It’s as if she raided the closet of a backup dancer on Pat Benetar’s tour. I know the 80s are having a revival right now, but come on!!

  • Nose

    Ok, I honestly didn’t see the Pat Benatar birthday thing before I posted…weird.

  • Sara

    I really enjoyed this episode. I agree about the soundtrack though, it’s very distracting! And yes, it is much more like Desperate Careerwives than S&City. The premise and actors are great, they just need to simmer down on the cliches a bit. I loved the track suit mom addition, it was hilarious.

  • yak

    I’m out. I watched on Sunday and thought this show was OK. Last night I kept dozing off sitting up in a chair! What a snoozfest.

  • Sorella

    I’m done. Tried watching it again, but I too snoozed, it’s SO boring!! The dialogue is so poor, the writing predictable, yet all over the place, the acting bad (I’m embarassed for Lucy Liu). It’s like they spend way too much time on the fashion, not nearly enough time on the story lines. Boring, not a fan, won’t watch anymore.

  • Lene

    Last night bored me. The first episode was fun and fluffy, but last night, all I could see was The Stuff. Stuff that’s out of my financial league. It makes it hard to relate to these women – at least SATC pretended the fabulous clothes were theoretically affordable by regular women, which meant The Stuff wasn’t blocking the characters’ relatability. Might give it one more week to hook me. We’ll see.

  • aymzer

    “I’m also not not getting any “-one to many “not”s.

  • monica

    there were definitely better parts in this episode than sunday’s. I do prefer a catty Mia though. She was nice in Charlie’s Angels and Lucky Number Slevin, so I can buy her being nice. But not girly-nice. Zoe’s mommy bear was hilarious and I would’ve punched that chick in the face. But I was surprised that she was even annoyed that track suit mom “hit on” her kids. weird. Juliet’s voice is really annoying sometimes and I would’ve chosen a throw-away guy, like a driver, not someone I might want to see again. But I loved when she rejected her husband–loser. I can’t believe he ratted on her to the marriage counselor. And Caitlin is adorable when she’s nervous around her girl-toy, but I wish they’d make it less I-want-to-jump-your-bones and more about finding a relationship. TV always makes gay people horny uncontrollable flirts.

  • Sweet

    Story? What story? I’ve been too busy looking at the fierce clothes, sparkly jewelry, and fabulous makeup. Lene, how did SATC’s clothes appear affordable? In one episode Carrie bought a $2,000 dress! I do have to say that “don’t hit on my kids” line was sooo lame… and that dude Eric doesn’t look like anyone’s dad. It looks like he spends 2 hours in the bathroom getting his 5 o’clock shadow and bedhead look juuust right.

  • jes

    I liked the episode. Love Mia’s cattiness and with so few gay characters on tv right now, glad to have Caitlin…but I agree with Monica. Lets see her and her girl-toy (wasn’t she on the L Word?) build a relationship.
    And how does Krista Allen continually change her looks so much? I barely recognized her as the track-suit mom.

  • Jennifer

    I wanted to give it a shot so I watched the 1st & 2nd episode. It is just not working of me. I am a huge SATC fan so this show was like lowering the bar. I think Lipstick Jungle will be better.

  • Cara

    Boring, not liking it, not watching anymore. Now looking forward to Lipstick Jungle.

  • Karen

    Here’s my take on the show. Watched it again last night. As far as I’m concerned, the show should only be about Lucy Liu and Frances O’Conner. The other story lines are pitiful. I mean, are we to believe that these successful women in their mid-to-late 30’s come bursting into a meeting to discuss whether or not she might have upset her new “girlfriend”? Are you kidding me? Grow up!

  • Henry

    Thank God someone noticed the friggin’ score. If it wasn’t so annoying, I’d almost take it as manipulative (certain music cue = certain emotional reaction to events or lines in scene).

  • Delon

    This second episode was far better than the first. I agree,the show comes off as DH meets SATC. I’ll watch the third episode, or even the following ones since there’s not much to watch right now. Hopefully, Lipstick Jungle will be better.

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