Reporter’s Notes

Kristen Kotz

Crazy for ‘Daisies’

I first witnessed the magic of “Pushing Daisies” last fall when the show premiered on ABC. After the first episode, I was hooked. I made sure my Wednesday nights were free so I could see each week’s episode, which is something I rarely do. If, for some bizarre reason, I had to miss the show, I would catch it online at as soon as possible.

This was before its season ended prematurely last November because of the Writers Guild of America’s strike. I waited nervously for weeks to see if ABC was going to bring the show back in the fall. Much to my relief, the network announced this past February it would return. The second season premiered Oct. 1.

For those who have not seen the show, “Pushing Daisies” is about a pie maker named Ned, played by Lee Pace from “Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day.” Ned has the ability to bring people back to life by touching them. The thing is, if he brings a person back, he can only let him or her live for one minute, otherwise someone else will die in the person’s place. Also, once he brings someone back, he can’t touch them again or they will die – this time forever. Ned learned this the hard way after bringing his mother back after she died from a brain aneurysm.

Ned uses his mysterious ability to help private investigator Emerson Cod, played by Chi McBride of “Boston Public,” solve murders by temporarily bringing the victims back to life long enough to find out what occurred. As it so happens, one of the murders Ned is called upon to solve is that of his childhood sweetheart, Charlotte “Chuck” Charles, played by Anna Friel of “Sunset Strip.”

After reviving her, the pie maker instantly falls in love with Chuck and cannot bear to “make her dead again.” Chuck joins Ned and the investigator in solving crimes while their romance blossoms. Yet, if Ned were to touch her, Chuck would die again and he would never, ever be able to bring her back to life.

This plot line is one of the things I adore about the show. Instead of focusing on the physical aspect of their relationship, it emphasizes the emotional aspects and how the two are meant to be.

It also leads to some heartwarming and slightly awkward moments on the show. Ned can’t actually touch Chuck, so he comes up with different ways to have physical contact with her. For example, in last week’s episode he ran a back scratcher that was shaped like a hand down the side of her face while Chuck smiled at him.

Another unique thing about “Pushing Daisies” is it simply does not look like anything else on television. Plenty of bright colors, oddly shaped buildings and interesting camera angles all make it aesthetically pleasing.

For me, what really ties the show together is narrator Jim Dale, who voiced the audio books for the “Harry Potter” series. His voice has a smooth quality and is pleasing to the ears. Dale knows how to give the right emotion to set the mood of the show.

While the premise of “Pushing Daisies” is unusual, to say the least, the ability it has to captivate viewers is unmatched by any show on television.

Contact all reporter Kristen Kotz at [email protected].