New Lady-Buddy-Cop-Mystery-Comedy Show on Horizon (of My Mind)

10 Dec

I’ve got an idea for a new lady-buddy-cop-mystery-comedy show à la Rizzoli & Isles.  This is already exciting, I know, but here’s the best part:  Delta Burke.

I was more excited about Delta Burke when I was blissfully unaware of how much plastic surgery she's had. Maybe it will have worn off by the time my show's being produced?

So here’s the thing:  I’ve been listening to audiobooks pretty consistently since I did my student teaching in spring 2010, and my ideal audiobook situation is finding a series of mystery novels that don’t bore/disgust me to death because then when I go back to the library after I’ve finished a book, I don’t have to spend a long time looking for something that I probably won’t like anyway (because the circumstances have to be just so for an audiobook–listening to a really awful narration or a whiney protagonist or bland sexy scenes for ten hours is not gonna cut it); I can just get the next one and go on with my life.

I burned through quite a few before I finally found a series I could stand for more than two books.  This seemingly endless string of doozies may have begun with Women’s Murder Club.  I picked it up for two main reasons: 1.) I had seen the made-for-tv movie version of the first book starring Terminator 2 as the bad guy and also Sean Young as someone ridiculous and also no Angie Harmon, and 2.) I’d seen a few episodes of the TV show (with Angie Harmon).

"Did you need someone to turn a mystery series starring a kinda boring, overly angsty heroine into a lady-buddy-cop-mystery-comedy show? Sure thing! Also, check out my sleeves! I scalped a Jonas Brother for them!"

But I’ll go on record with this:  James Patterson’s oevre is so much less fun than its TV show. In fact, it’s less fun than its strangely edited, terribly paced made-for-tv-movie, too.

So I moved on.  I then tried this series starring an ADA who… um…  I do not remember anything about that series.  Except there was a greenhouse in one of them.  And some Poe in another (or maybe that was the same one).  And she (that boring ADA I remember next to nothing about) had had a murdered fiancé or something.  And the whole thing was narrated by Barbara Rosenblat, which was the best part about it and is something important that will come up later in this post.

And then I had a short, short excursion into the world of 1, 2 buckle-my-Evanovitch.  I didn’t even get through a whole one of those.

Then I tried that one where the lady cop is married to a super rich guy and she has a super sad past and also it’s in the future for no reason–a fact I slowly came to learn after probably a whole chapter of reading.  And all of the titles have “in death” in them, regardless of sensicality.

Another of these series I attached myself to early on was the one that later became Rizzoli & Isles.  Spoiler Alert:  The TV show, like the Angie Harmon cop show vehicle before it, is 100% funner than the books.

Everyone in the books is super angsty and lame.  And Rizzoli and Isles aren’t even BFFs.  And every couple of chapters it switches POV from Maura (who is SOOOOOOOO lame and having a SOOOOOOOO lame affair with a priest, for some SOOOOOOOOOO lame reason) to the (not that lame) killer to the (SOOOOOOOOOO lame) victim (which is a problem with the Women’s Murder Club books, too, weirdly).  No thanks to that noise.

Pictured: Better than the books. No, really.

But when I figured out this series was being made into a TV show, I was excited because I felt like I was getting in on the ground floor of something.  And then I watched it, and I liked it because it keeps some of the plotting of the books and setting and whatnot, but the TV show focuses on relationships of the characters, which is my cup of tea, not a bunch of POV switching faux-Faulkner nonsense.

Then I tried Diane Mott Davidson’s catering mysteries, and I said to myself, “These between-words saliva noises sound familiar.  Who’s that lady who’s reading this book?”  And the part of me that is a vaudeville comedienne but also an internet researcher said, “That’s no lady, that’s Barbara Rosenblat, who narrated that lame ADA series you tried.”  And I said, “Ok, sounds like we got a winner.”

So, while I didn’t fall in love with the series, it’s ok company during a commute.  Here’s the premise:  Caterer Goldy Schultz (and I don’t know how that’s spelled because I listen to it, remember?), who used to be married to this abusive but sexy doctor, (who in my TV adaptation will be played smarmily/charmingly by Chris Noth) has a teen son, now is married to a homicide detective (who will be played by someone hunky in a middle-aged TV actor way), caters for various events in fictional Aspen Meadows, CO, and ends up solving mysteries a lot.  Her best friend is also an ex-wife of this doctor (whom they both call “The Jerk” because of his initials J.R.K and his demeanor).  They cavort around making delicious food, eating delicious food, and solving murders in this richly detailed fictional town.  The setting and side characters are really the best parts of this series; they feel real and lovingly written.

Co-Starring Delta Burke as Marla, the protagonist’s flamboyant and fabulously wealthy BFF who happens to be our heroine’s ex-husband’s ex-wife.

Haven’t decided who else should be in it.  But I think the lead character should be a grounded but ebulliant, kind-of-silly lady, like Leslie Knope.  But older and with kids.  Someone who can do a lot of physical comedy and appear charmingly harried yet good natured at all times.

Idea!  Bonnie Hunt!

Pictured: The most brilliant casting idea.

And that’s the show!  Bonnie Hunt and Delta Burke and Chris Noth and plenty of guest stars and knotty pines and silly mysteries!  I can’t wait!

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