Filed under: Recaps & Reviews
Sophie Winkleman, stars as Charlotte Payne in the new comedy, 100 Questions. The show revolves around Charlotte going to see a dating service counselor, and getting asked one question per episode, which becomes the theme and plot of the show, hence the name, 100 Questions. The show focuses on Charlotte's exploits, as she attempts to further understand the nature of her relationships through her own unfortunate yet self-inflicted experiences. "What Brought You Here" started off with a scene at a ball game, in which Charlotte rejected her boyfriend of three month's proposal on a jumbotron, whilst speaking into a microphone for everybody in attendance to hear. This event led to Charlotte's friends repeatedly reminding her that it was humiliating for her boyfriend, and the rest of the episode deals with the aftermath of this incident, as Charlotte made things worse, but learned through her friends.
Her close circle of friends comprise of a pretty standard sitcom formula archetype of friends. There is the attractive blond girl that acts according to her stereotype, the serious friend that acts as the voice of reason, the guy that is too aware of his social awkwardness, and finally, there's the man that male viewers are supposed want to be like, due to his sense of humor, ease of approaching women, and perfectly timed lack of verbal filters. The intention is for this ensemble cast to play off each other to create humor, as their personality types are supposed to clash and mix in just the right way. However, perhaps due to this being the pilot episode, the group chemistry was just not there. The subplots of the pick-up line and the albino felt tacked on, predictable, and contrived. A lot of this has to do with the pacing, as this episode felt like the characters were really just waiting patiently for their turns to cue the laugh track.
What did work in this episode, was the events getting worse as Charlotte experienced the backlash of her marriage rejection. Winkleman is convincing (in a sitcom way), as somebody that just does not get what kind of pain she inflicted, and why she is ultimately feeling her own emotions of rejecting back at her. After all, she did get nicknamed the Yankee Bitch, become a youtube embarrassment, got famous for the wrong reasons, and lost the ring, which ultimately became too much for her, leading her to start to take a look at herself, and why she is seeing a dating service counselor.