The Original Movie and Episodes 1, 2, 3 of the Hour-Long Series
I love going back and watching this series (movies and episodes) from the beginning. Each time the characters reveal something new to me or remind me to remember something I may have forgotten. On this viewing - I'm thinking about things that happen by mistake. Things that happen that aren't supposed to, or we're not expecting. In a way, this entire series is based on mistakes - letters and packages that end up in the DLO (Dead Letter Office) rather than their intended destination. When life presents these detours to us, we're often annoyed, upset, or even heartbroken. What we anticipated, what we intended, doesn't happen in the way we want it to. Instead, we are forced to redirect. That's exactly what happens to Shane McInerny (Kristin Booth) that leads her to the DLO. She's anticipating a completely different outcome and instead lands in a place that is foreign and unlike anywhere she has ever been before. it's no fault of her own, a clerical error really, but it changes the course of her entire life as well as the lives of her soon to be Postable friends.
I'm going to jump ahead a bit - but please stay with me. In episode 2, "To Whom it May Concern", Valerie Harper plays Theresa Capodiamonte, the life-affirming supervisor that takes over for Daphne Zuniga's Andrea. The episode ends with her portraying Glinda the Good Witch from the Wizard of Oz on stage - but I believe the Wizard of Oz is a theme that runs through the first movie and the entire first season, not just the second episode. If you picture Andrea as the Wicked Witch of the West, Theresa as Glinda the Good Witch, and our four lovable Postables as Dorothy, Scarecrow, Tin Man, and the Cowardly Lion you see their journey together in a whole new way. They are each seeking to be whole again, missing a part of themselves they feel they need to move forward, but as Glinda shares with Dorothy at the end of the Wizard of Oz, she had the power within her all along. And so do our lovable Postables.
So if we go back to the first movie now - Shane being sent to the DLO by mistake - it parallel's Dorothy landing in the strange land of OZ and meeting three friends along her yellow brick road journey to find The Wizard. Shane is on a similar journey, seeking faith and meaning in life but unsure about God or what she believes. The way Dorothy longed for home, Shane longs to leave her new assignment. The people she encounters at the DLO are beyond what she can wrap her head around. First she meets Oliver O'Toole (Eric Mabius) outside at the coffee stand. She has no idea she will be working with him, which makes their first encounter all the more real. Shane finds Oliver to be something out of 1940, a throwback to a time before cell phones and internet. He seems stuck, out of sync, and too slow for her face-paced needs. Perhaps a little oil to his joints would loosen him up much the way it did for Tin Man, or maybe letting go of his missing wife would cure his wounded heart. Shane also finds Rita Haywith (Yan-Kay Crystal Lowe) and Norman Dorman (Geoff Gustafson). Rita is the silly and brilliant soon-to-be best friend who Shane can always depend on. A photographic memory and a kind heart are not enough for our version of the Scarecrow to have confidence in her own abilities. We will see this time and again, whether with her novel or with her dream to be Ms. Postal Delivery. That leaves us with Norman as the Cowardly Lion. Dreaming of being King of the Forest, Norman find the courage he lacks by finally finding a family of his own - what he later names the Postables. And how is Shane similar to Dorothy? Not only is hers the journey of being placed in an unexpected land that is both at once magical and scary, she is trying to heal her own wounds with her father, her mother, and her ex-boyfriend. Her presence in the lives of the three people she will travel the postal highway with will forever change them and enable them all to get 'unstuck' from fear, loneliness, and the wounds of the past.
There is so much to these installments - we could chat about Oliver's sewing kit he gives to Charlie for an hour alone. But for our first chat I wanted to focus on the four main characters. Please watch the first movie and first three episodes again, and then visit our Rom Com Road facebook page - the link is at the top of the home page - and share your thoughts about the episodes and what you think of my blog. And don't forget to visit Eric Mabius's profile page in the STAR section of the Home Page.
Until next week - #Postables