Episode 1 – | Review Score – 3.5/5
Episode 2 – | Review Score – 4/5
Episode 3 – | Review Score – 4/5
Episode 4 – | Review Score – 3/5
Episode 5 – | Review Score – 3/5
Episode 6 – | Review Score – 3.5/5
Schmigadoon is not going to win any awards. It’s not an outstanding musical, nor is it particularly taxing with its drama. However, it is undoubtedly a fun, light-hearted romp all the same.
The show essentially takes the idea of Brigadoon and adds a heavy dollop of satire, both poking fun at musicals of old and embracing all the quirks and simplicity of the genre’s best. There are multiple nods and Easter eggs to different musicals here, and this feeds into the bright and sickly-sweet aesthetic clinging to everything.
It’s perhaps ironic then that one half of its protagonist couple hates musicals. In fact, this forms the crux of the early jokes that emanate from this 6 episode series.
That character is Josh, who heads off on a couple’s retreat with his girlfriend Mel. Things are rough between them, and they’re desperate to rekindle that spark they once had. After losing their stone hearts (quite literally) the pair find themselves inexplicably transported to the strange fantastical world of Schmigadoon.
There, the pair realize they need to find their true love in order to find a way back to our world. But are these two really destined for each other? Or will they find their soulmate in this archaic fantasy world?
The story being told here is incredibly predictable. Aside from a couple of subplot twists, the show mostly sticks to plot tropes you’ll see a mile off. However, Schmigadoon isn’t interested in telling a particularly taxing or original story. Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist this is not; Schmigadoon sticks to a rigid script which is both its strength and weakness.
On the one hand, each episode adds 2 or 3 songs which riff on different ideas and keep things feeling tight and constrained. Sometimes this works really well, including a particularly satisfying Coda during the finale. Other times it falls flat; episode 3’s crude attempt at injecting low-brow humour is particularly disappointing.
At the same time, there’s absolutely nothing here to help this stand out. Both Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist and Centaurworld add originality to their musicals. And that’s just on the small screen.
With an equal dose of misfires and stand-out segments, Schmigadoon is a fun show but certainly not without its problems. There’s definitely not enough substance to return to this one in a hurry when you’re done.
If you’re in the mood for some light, fluffy entertainment you’ll undoubtedly find it here. Just don’t expect an encore with this any time soon – despite a semi-open ending that would suggest otherwise.