This assignment was interesting to complete. My initial TV show was Law and Order SVU, but had technical difficulties with obtaining programming. With some assistance J , I was able to find a comedy that I did not know came on prime time television. The show I chose was, "Trophy Wife." The comedy is based on a reformed party girl (Kate) who finds herself as a new stepmom after falling in love with a man (Pete) with three calculating children and two critical ex-wives. They met at a karaoke bar where she fell into Pete’s arm (literally) and after a year of dating, they tied the knot.
The Trophy Wife aired for its first season and episode on September 24, 2013, in a Tuesday night time slot on ABC at 9:30 p.m. using a single camera for filming. The show creators are Emily Halpern and Sarah Haskins. Before it aired, the pilot show was seen on airplanes. I felt this odd because most pilot shows are aired just before or a little time after the regular season for prime time shows when they are ending their regular season until the fall season. ABC network took its pilot show and aired it on Delta Airlines, American Airlines, Virgin American and United Airlines during the month of August. Interesting on how ABC used this to spin off a new show. I felt that the ABC network used a calculating play using its passengers as captive audience knowing that while they are on a plane they had nowhere to go and for entertainment, this was a good way of doing this until the plane landed. With that, the passengers were able to see a new pilot TV show that was free. So this was icing on the cake since everything now is a fee when flying and an interesting way for promoting a new product for the ABC network.
The family name is the Harrisons. The stars of the show are Kate Harrison, played by Malin Akerman, the new wife who has the title trophy wife only because she is younger than her predecessor played by Marcia Gay Harden (Diane, 1st wife); an intense, over-achieving doctor who disapproves of Kate’s barely tapped maternal instinct is the mother of twin teenagers Hillary and Warren. Michaela Watkins (Jackie, 2nd wife), is the mother of adopted son Bert who can pull Pete’s strings with her special blend of irrational, behavior. Kate’s best friend and party girl, Meg, the only woman Kate knows who has less experience with kids than she. Moreover, the man behind this semi-chaos family, actor Bradley Whitford, (Pete Harrison, husband).
I was unable to see the first two shows but watched episode 3, The Social Network. This episode was based on the daughter, Hillary when she lies to hang out with a boy, and Diane (her mom) and Pete snoop to find out if she was having sex only to find out that she was hanging out with kids her age playing educational board games and just having good wholesome fun. After being caught, she was still grounded but all adults involved were happy on the choice Hillary made on whom she was hanging out with.
Episode 4, The Breakup, involved Meg, Kate best friend, who left her boyfriend and wanted to hang out with Kate. Before Meg came to the house, Pete and Kate planned for a date night in front of the television just the two of them hoping not to be disturbed. Oops, did not happen. Kate and Meg went out only because it was Meg was disrupting the family with her unhappiness. However, disaster happened with Meg destroyed Hillary science projects. Met and Kate got into a fight but all went well later and they eventually kissed and made up after Pete intervene due to Kate unhappiness of what happened. Meg tried to make up for destroying Hillary project, which was so so. Happy conclusion!
While watching these episodes, I felt the audience blend was based on newly married couples to seasoned married couples with family, ages 25 – 60. As the commercials began advertising, they blended to the selected audience starting with Nissan advertising one of its vehicles as being a safe and reliable family car able to travel through rough terrains or stormy weather. The next commercial advertised by Lowes showing how new bathroom décor is what is needed for the home. With an audience of young to mid-age couples, this is perfect especially with the economy still balancing to bounce back on track and buying new homes is not the answer at the moment, renovation and remodeling is.
Another commercial also flowed with the theme of the show by advertising a GE top of the line refrigerator. It focused on how helpful this refrigerator could be for a family after grocery shopping and being able to place all its perishable food nice and neat using all the available compartments. Also with this refrigerator, it was a mom’s best friend because the doors did not show any fingerprints and clean up is easy. What mom would not want a refrigerator like this? Less cleaning, oh yes, I agree with that.
Seeing the various commercials, I did not find any conflicts. The commercials flowed through and were on target for the type of audience viewing this comedy on their TV set.
The various articles that I read from the critics gave me insight with positive feedback. Some stated that the ratings are stable but could be better but competing in that time slot can be tough competition for a new show, but I feel it will make it.
Trophy Wife should be a hit. It was funny but had meaning to everyday life with normal families. Do not think that ex-wives would be coming in and out of my home but that is a stretch but in all, I could relate to the show theme. As Kate has her hands full being a new mom, I believe the writers will do a good job to make Kate look like she is on top of her game through the first season.
Like many sitcoms, ABC's multi-parent comedy is about stereotypes. But it's also about discovering the real people behind them.
KIM M WILSON's insight:
I found this article very useful for my research because I felt similar to the writer’s thoughts. Kate is not a typical stereotype and offer useful insight for being a first-time mom. I, too, feel it is a hit show.
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