Back in December when I shared my review of Amazon's Sneaky Pete, a reader commented that I should watch The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, also on Amazon. I hadn't heard of the show at that point, so I immediately looked it up. If you aren't familiar, the premise is that Midge Maisel is a young newlywed helping her husband, Joel, pursue his dream to become a stand-up comedian. When it turns out Joel is having an affair and leaves, Midge discovers that she may actually be the one with more natural talent.
Rachel Brosnahan plays the title character and she's fantastic. Brosnahan is 27 years old (let's pause to take that in). You may recognize her from her role on House of Cards. As Midge Maisel, Brosnahan is a firecracker. She's witty, passionate and relentless.
Her husband, Joel, is played by Michael Zegen. If he looks familiar, he was also on Boardwalk Empire. As Joel, Zegen strikes a perfect balance between charm (in their early courtship) and selfishness. My favorite scene with him is actually at the very end, when he has one last night with Midge (in her childhood bedroom) and he starts to realize everything she did to keep him happy.
The show was co-created by Amy Sherman-Palladino and Dan Palladino, the famous co-creators of the Gilmore Girls. While this show has a completely different vibe (they traded present day Stars Hallow for Manhattan in the 1950s), it has the same female heroines and quick dialogue.
The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel is extra marvelous because it is visually stunning. Not only are you transported to the glitz and glamour of 1958 New York, but the costumes are magnificent. It reminded me of the way I loved to watch Mad Men just to see the clothes. If you were as obsessed with Midge's wardrobe as I was, check out this definitive ranking of her most fabulous outfits.
The only element of the show that grated on me was Midge's parents, played by Marin Hinkle and Tony Shalhoub. The mother felt completely one dimensional and her father's eccentricities were over the top and distracting.
Fun fact: actress Marin Hinkle is from Boston and her mother, Margaret Hinkle, was a judge in Massachusetts Superior Court.
If you're looking for a new show to stream with a dynamic female lead, this is it. The show is free to watch if you have Amazon Prime. There are eight episodes and each is somewhere between 45 - 60 minutes long.
At last Sunday's Golden Globe Awards, Rachel Brosnahan won the trophy for Best Actress and the show took home the title of Best Television Series - Musical or Comedy.
Tell me, what are you binging and loving? I always need new recommendations.