Probably up there with the best episodes of the whole series this was a knockout! The Taming of the Shrew was an inspiration for this series. Why not have a parody of it and what a parody it is! I like how the show begins just like every other episode until the opening theme ends with the Created by Glen Gordon Caron and then is turned off by a woman who wants her son to go do his homework. The boy (who seems a little too young to be interested in a series such as this but I don't know maybe he really liked David. I can see the appeal there) complains and stomps off to read his assignment which just happens to be The Taming of the Shrew. What we get is a Moonlighting flavored story about Kate (Maddie) and Petruchio (David) with Agnes playing the role of Kate's sister and Herbert playing her love. Some may complain that the episode was made almost completely in iambic pentameter which even the actors do by the end in jest but the writers play with the words and 80s pop culture enough in the dialogue that it makes it funny and quite entertaining. I mean who doesn't like the wedding scene?! One of the most memorable scenes for me when I was kid was watching David sing Good Lovin! I loved it then and still do today. The ending with the twist about the "sun being the moon" and such was very good. I actually thought the sort of feminist take on the matter where Kate proves her point through Petruchio made sense. Go Kate! Get your man and make a statement while you're at it! Oh and one more thing. At least we got to see Maddie and David get married here even if they were suppose to be different characters, remember this was all in the mind of a boy who was a fan of the show so in a way well you get my meaning. Also, just to put it out there I LOVE iambic pentameter...when it's been Moonlighted! Carry on, thou sweet serial! :D
What an amazing idea. David and Maddie were a modern-day Kate and Petruchio anyway, so why not do an episode built around The Taming of the Shrew? What a tribute to the talents of these actors that they carried off the demands of Shakespearean roles and Elizabethan English so well. And a tribute to the writers that the Shakespearean lines and modern-day lines form such a cohesive whole. The stock David-and-Maddie throw-way lines are a perfect fit with the attitudes of the characters in Shrew.
There is nothing new about updating Shakespeare (theatre directors do it all the time) but to do it as an episode of a prime time tv show--this is the sort of thing that made Moonlighting such a great show. They took the kind of creative risks that are so rare on network tv.
This particular risk apparently didn't pay off that well, at least not the kind of payoff networks are looking for. According to the dvd commentary, it was the most expensive and lowest rated Moonlighting episode. People saw Shakespeare and just turned it off. What a shame--they missed one of the funniest episodes ever. I can still remember laughing all the way through the wedding scene . . . when David comes in . . . and the music begins . . . Hysterical.
A young boy wants nothing more than to see this week's episode of 'Moonlighting.' His mother nixes the idea: "Are those the detectives who fight all the time, but all they really want to do is sleep together?" She says it's too much for his growing mind, and sends the lad off to bed.
The disgruntled child then dreams about what would happen if the Blue Moon characters were adapted to the world of a play he knows from school.
The production featured David as the rogue Petruchio, who comes to Padua looking to marry money, and Maddie as Kate, first daughter of a local man of note. Her gentle younger sister cannot get married until her senior is wed. The problem is, both Kate and the local bachelors want nothing to do with each other; Kate is a self-determined person, to put it mildly, in an age when this was little heard of for 'the fair sex.'
Petruchio looks up Kate's father to see if the hand of his daughter, not to mention the dowry, is still available, and the games begin. The suitor and the lady get along like two cats in a bag. Of high explosives.
The acting is strong, the setting both believable and unique, and the episode quickly became one of the most memorable in the history of the show.
A romance between two people who seem to hate each other-- now, who would believe a thing like *that*?...
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