This past Sunday night ABC premiered their newest drama, the spooky, ooky, devilishly corny 666 Park Avenue, based on Gabriella Pierce's novel by the same name. The author helped write the first five episodes of the series too.
The unintentional farce of a horror series centers on The Drake, a posh building in the Upper West Side of Manhattan in New York City -- if NYC was set-designed by David Fincher and Pinterest.
The pilot opens up with a concert violinist bleeding while in a tense performance. Shades of Charlie Daniels Band, you think? He comes back to the Drake, where he lives, and is trying to escape from something. The building? Himself? He smashes his instrument in disgust.
Fire on the mountain. Run, boys, run.
As he is leaving the Drake, the front door slams, a small hatch in the entrance flings open -- no bigger than a doggie door -- and sucks him back into the building, never to be seen from again.
Muhahahahahahaha, the building is evil!
Yes, 666 Park Avenue is already being joked about as one of the weirdest shows of this young television season with shades of Passions, American Horror Story, and Fantasy Island thrown about.
That's not really the address of the apartment building, just a clever shadow.
The cast is lead by Terry O'Quinn (yes, John Locke from Lost) and Vanessa Williams (yes, that one chick from Penthouse) as the older married couple, the Dorans, that own the extravagant building, which looks a tad like the Dakota, where John Lennon and Yoko Ono lived together.
You know that O'Quinn's Gavin Doran is evil because he is white and bald. Williams' character Olivia Doran is not too far removed from her Ugly Betty persona. A rich and crazy bitch who spews ice from her mouth and eyes.
The young couple that comes into the orbit of the Drake, Jane (Rachael Taylor) and Henry (Dave Annable), are there to co-manage and dwell in the building and be sexy and fit while doing so, and little do they know how spoooooooooky it will be, full of screams, blood, and people-eating walls.
How long until the building has sex with Jane? Only time will tell...
What's this? Brian, a down-on-his-luck playwright being seduced by the beautiful athletic blond woman he has been peeping on across the street?
His photographer wife Louise cuts him down whenever she can at his expense, and once the girl, Alexis, becomes her assistant (coincidence?? I think not!), sparks will fly, and soon Louise is nearly killed by a rabid elevator door.
We meet John Barlow early on, his hands bleeding since he has made a deal with Mr. Doran to keep killing people in order for his wife to come back to life. As long as he kills Doran's business enemies, the wife can stick around -- albeit somewhat zombie-like -- and Barlow won't feel so guilty about her suicide.
Barlow is seen chasing down a man with a butcher knife, because in the world of 666 guns do not exist and style wins over functionality. He can't kill again, and Doran soon banishes him into the hellish morass that is the walls of his apartment.
As Doran says ominously, still dressed in his tux from the symphony, "You are only renting this life!"
Meanwhile, Jane is getting super-duper extra-suspicious of the building and that freaky-deaky mosaic in the basement near that boss laundry room.
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Even still at the end of the episode, Jane and Henry are seen signing the papers to stay at the Drake for a year, against Jane's better judgment it seems. Plus, Mr. Doran is just that charming.
They didn't sign in their own blood, which bothered me. A lot. I wanted there to be blood.
Let's just assume right now that Doran is Satan, or at least a demon, to make the show more plausible. He seems to make people sign over their souls to live in the Drake and become his slaves and eternal servants -- just like T-Mobile -- which is understandable. Have you seen the closet space?? And the view!?
And Vanessa Williams is just playing herself.