Six Feet Under, a tv show review

A tv show review written by: Lee Sonogan

(2001-2005) 55min/Comedy, drama


Brenda: The future is just a fucking concept that we use to avoid living today.

This tv show is a drama series that takes a darkly comical look at members of a dysfunctional California family that runs an independent funeral home. Within a week of the first episode being aired, HBO renewed the show for a second season. Alan Ball, the director was inspired to write this series after losing his sister. Alan Ball is also known for writing the famous movie American Beauty.

Set in Los Angeles because, according to series creator Alan Ball, LA is the ‘world capital of the denial of death’. Alan Ball had 13 days to shoot the pilot episode, something which caused him a degree of anxiety, seeing as he had never directed before. In the end, it played off well for him.

Michael C. Hall’s first screen role. He had confined himself to the New York stage prior to ‘Six Feet Under. The first scene he shot was in the pilot episode when David goes to the morgue to collect his father’s body. Michael C. Hall who plays David Fisher and Tim Maculan who plays Father Jack would go on to work together again on Dexter in 2006.

Fisher & Sons funeral home is actually the well-known Auguste R. Marquis residence that now houses the Filipino Federation of America in Los Angeles. Caskets for the show are made by ABC Caskets in Los Angeles. Along with themes of death, the show uses everything from black humour to trippy daydream sequences to get their scenes interesting.

Over the course of the series, 63 episodes, deaths, and causes of death were: 13 people have died from natural causes. 10 people have died from a car accident-related fate. 11 people have been murdered. 8 people have committed suicide. 9 people have died from a head injury. 5 people have died of cancer. 22 people have died from other complications.

This show was ranked #27 on Empire magazine’s 50 Greatest TV Shows Of All Time in 2008. This show is raw emotion with mesmerizing personal conflict. This show brings out stories that you will not see in the average tv show. The show is not afraid to take a pause and have the show communicate without dialogue. How each episode revolves around one funeral of a person is also impressive. I recommend this show to everyone who likes HBO shows and a bit of theme about death.


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