Lady Cha Cha
The low-budget anthology series returns for a second season that manages to right some of the problems from last year whilst simultaneously falling into the same issues plaguing the show again. With 8 brand new episodes and a host of returning characters, Easy manages to tighten the storytelling but it’s largely the newcomers and their specific episodes that stand out this year. There’s more cohesiveness all round and a welcome change of pace sees some better endings established in each episode, polished off with more subtle thematic messages throughout giving the show a more sophisticated depth than before.
The stories range from predictable to surprising, full of moral themes and commentary that don’t feel as heavy-handed as they were last year. This more subtle approach really helps Easy settle into a rhythm early on with a direct focus toward the characters and plots rather than the ham-fisted social commentaries that took away from the content of the episodes. Much like last year, the main focus of Easy is of course love, relationships, sex and dating and the way these are explored in interesting and artistic ways in each of the 30 minute episodes help keep the show fresh and exciting. On top of this, the second season of Easy sees an interesting inclusion of some other issues too. Sharing, kindness, community spirit and thought provocative messages around security are all explored but in a show predominantly about love and relationships, they also feel a little jarring and out-of-place.
It’s a pity that the actual content of the plots vary wildly from episode to episode again; a few in particular never really go anywhere whilst others are more focused and stand out because of this approach. There’s some good juxtapositions and artistic narratives explored though, with certain episodes like Open Marriage really good in this respect. The wild difference in quality between episodes is further hindered by the dreaded abrupt ending syndrome that unwelcomingly returns for several episodes this year.
The acting is pretty good again though and helps keep the show moving along at a decent pace. There are numerous realistic scenes depicted throughout the eight episodes with one of the highlights being characters arguing over one another in nicely framed, rotating camera shots. Unlike in other TV shows where you’d see each character taking turns to share their feelings on the matter, Easy throws caution to the wind and depicts everyone talking over one another. Its messy, incoherent and absolutely brilliant in its realistic depiction of these sort of heated discussions. Whilst Easy never excels with sophisticated camera movements or extraordinary cinematography, it does thrive with its simple, direct scripts that do a good job of keeping the audience engaged with its realistically depicted characters, even if the content of the episodes aren’t always up to the same calibre as some of the writing.
Anyone who was a fan of last season’s structure with the individual episodes in this anthology exploring love and relationships will be right at home. The second season of Easy does a good job of at least addressing some of the issues from last year, even if it still manages to come undone in its execution at times. More episodes at least try to have a three act structure this time around which helps but the plots lack the wow factor to make Easy a must-watch show. In small, digestible bites, Easy is certainly a charming crowd-pleaser but as a binge watch, Easy just doesn’t grip you as much as it should. The more subtle thematic messages are a welcome inclusion and although Easy is unlikely to win any awards, it’s also not going to be truly loathed by critics. Much like last year, Easy is a pleasant ride but it’s also a largely forgettable one. If you go into this one expecting more of the same from last year then you’re sure to be content with this anthology exploring love and life.
Verdict - 7/10