Review of “Leaving Normal”

This is from Scifi Ign:

Roswell, Leaving Normal

review: The Continuing Follies of Christian Kyle Slater and Jar Jar Maria.

January 12, 2000
by Sarah Kuhn

There is a small problem with my beloved Roswell, which I was just able to put my finger on this week. All of the supporting characters are annoying. And not in the “ha ha, loveable sidekick!” kind of way — it’s more like the grating, “please shut up now” kind of way.

This week, Liz’s dear grandmother falls fatally ill, and Liz wonders if Max might be able to do something about it. Meanwhile, Max gets beat up by a bunch of Kyle’s oafish buddies. And that’s pretty much it. More longing glances. More irritating supporting players. Over and out. Now, I am still ever so taken with the young lovers that I am willing to sit through this.

Max has done the wounded puppy dog thing about a billion times in the span of four episodes, but it’s still damn cute. Who knew that Jason Behr had it in him to morph from Dawson’s Creek jock jerk to celebrity crush material? And Liz has kind of a My So-Called Life, I am oh-so-relatable thing going on. Take, for example, the scene in which Max brings her grandmother back to say good-bye. Hello, entering Cheez Whiz territory! Ah, but did my eyes well up? Oh, yes, did they ever.

I also still like Isabel, though I’m kind of wondering about her two snotty friends — since when is she and extra from Jawbreaker? Oh, well. But as for everyone else…

There’s Maria. Shall we call her Jar Jar Maria? At least she was slightly more subdued this week, but I am still irritated by her very presence, so screechy and caricatured is she. But we’ve pretty much covered this — this week, it’s the supporting male characters that truly come into their own as full-fledged annoyances. Kyle, who seemed lump-of-butter benign before, has somehow decided that he is Christian Slater, and never has there been so much eyebrow arching and nasal line delivery since Pump Up the Volume. Note to Kyle: just remember, for every Heathers, there’s a Kuffs.

Pushing the limits of annoyingness, however, is Isabel and Max’s buddy, Michael. He smirks and stares and purses his lips so much, you’d think he was the sole graduate from the Dylan McKay Academy of Studied Detachment. Uh, Michael? Nobody cares. Go away.

Ah, but back to Liz and Max. Their sweet, desperate moment at the end was just adorable. Maybe it means that something will actually happen next week, and then we can slowly do away with all of the supporting characters and it’ll be Liz and Max 4-Evah, and Isabel can visit them after she ditches her snot friends. After all, there’s some convoluted message somewhere in this show about following your dreams, and that, you see, is mine.