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Category Archives: Victorious

The Nickelodeon TV show Victorious is a unique blend of comedies old and new. This section is for review posts for that show.

Victorious — “Victori-Yes”

Victorious‘s ending could not have been more different than iCarly‘s. Where the Miranda Cosgrove headliner was given a special-length episode that brought resolution and catharsis to the show’s long-evolving relationships and character dilemmas, Victorious comes to a close prematurely, albeit with an episode that parallels some of its best work and showcases its particular brand of manic expressionism. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on February 2, 2013 in The Archives, Victorious

 

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Victorious — “Brain Squeezers”

One of Victorious‘s biggest themes is fame: the acquisition of it and the effect it has on the people in its immediate glow. The pilot, after all, is about Tori getting into a prestigious Californian high school for the arts after wowing a crowd she wasn’t even supposed to perform for. The show as initially pitched, with Tori as the protagonist, thus defines each character by their reactions to her both as an outstanding performer and as the new kid in school. Victorious hasn’t been that show in a while, of course, not since it began developing better purposes for its main cast, plus coming up with new situations to place the main cast so that they’ll be forced to work together in order to accomplish a goal. But occasionally, the original DNA of the show’s pilot peeks out from its hiding spot, if only to draw a line between where the show was when it started in 2009 and where the show is now, with all of its developments intact. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on January 13, 2013 in The Archives, Victorious

 

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Victorious — “Tori Fixes Beck And Jade”

I’ve been neglecting posts on iCarly and Victorious lately. Part of that has been a matter of time management: other commitments have kept me from having the energy and time to sit down and write about the episodes. But another part has been the lack of anything really worth talking about in the most recent episodes of iCarly (sans the series finale, and I don’t know when I’ll get around to committing some thoughts on that) and particularly last week’s Victorious, which featured atrocious gender politics and a solid premise whose promise gets wasted by about halfway through the episode. All in all, “Cell Block” was not the show’s best moment. “Tori Fixes Beck And Jade,” on the other hand, was a perfect example of the show at its finest. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on December 2, 2012 in The Archives, Victorious

 

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Victorious — “Three Girls and a Moose”

Victorious being what it is, it can sometimes feel like the show is out of touch with high schoolers (and with their predecessors, the tweens). But more often than not, it’s succinct in employing its plots in ways that bring the characters to the limits of their insanities without crossing the line of disbelief. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on October 20, 2012 in The Archives, Victorious

 

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Victorious — “Opposite Date”

Tori and Beck in Opposite Date courtesy Nickelodeon

Victorious could well be considered a master-class in the art of the multi-camera sitcom. One of its biggest assets is in finding ways to fill up small, enclosed sets with a story so ready to be told that it’s bursting at the seams of the television. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on October 13, 2012 in The Archives, Victorious

 

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Victorious — “The Hambone King”

Robbie in alley of Nozu's

Dan Schneider’s love of television is self-evident in his shows. Though he uses the multi-camera sitcom partially as a means to appeal to the Nickelodeon demographics, he also uses it and his writing of it to embed his own personal history with the medium into his characters. Carly gets the bright idea to stick her big toe up her bathtub pipe just to prove The Dick Van Dyke Show wrong and ends up with her big toe stuck in the bathtub pipe. Gibby betrays Sam during a game of Paintball Assassin, and the two play out one of the most famous scenes from The Wire (spoilers in link). And increasingly within iCarly and Victorious, he and his writers can’t help but call out the tired sitcom plots that the shows frequently try to reinvent, with mixed success. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on September 29, 2012 in The Archives, Victorious

 

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Victorious — “Wanko’s Warehouse”

Victorious is a show whose whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Early on, the show frequently attempted standard television plot structures (A-plot, B-plot, runner in particular, common for multi-camera sitcoms such as this one) that split up its core cast into different stories with different ultimate goals. These invariably ended up weaker than the episodes where the characters were confined to the same temporal-spatial locations. Season one episodes “Stuck in an RV” (or “Survival of the Hottest” if you like) and “Sleepover at Sikowitz” were clear early examples of the kinds of stories the show could tell simply by giving the entire cast a common goal. And even as the storytelling in general improved throughout seasons two and three, the episodes where everyone is united in a single conflict stand out among the pack. “Wanko’s Warehouse,” the fourth (and final) season premiere, continues in this vein. It’s an episode with a simple goal that nonetheless carries with it a group of people who have gotten to know each other quite well. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on September 23, 2012 in The Archives, Victorious

 

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Victorious — “The Blonde Squad”: redhead’s in disguise

One of Cat’s primary characteristics is her complete lack of self-awareness. Like Cordelia on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel (in season one, before her character development), she isn’t dumb or entirely useless, but she has a particularly idiosyncratic way of interpreting communication signals. The somewhat blunt way to say this is that she’s ditzy, which makes it all the more appropriate that an episode like “The Blonde Squad” that puts her ditzy behavior on the fritz also happens to prominently feature the two physical characteristics most commonly associated with ditzy behavior in pop culture: blonde hair, blue eyes. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on June 30, 2012 in The Archives, Victorious

 

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Victorious — “Crazy Ponnie”

Victorious is an incredibly malleable show. A few weeks ago, we got “Tori Goes Platinum,” an hour-long episode that proves the show is capable of taking itself seriously even while Cat is addicted to a sweet British treat called bibble. Today, we get Jennette McCurdy coming over from sister show iCarly to drive Tori completely off-the-wall. That these two very different types of episodes can exist side-by-side is testament to the strengths of Victorious. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on June 9, 2012 in The Archives, Victorious

 

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Victorious — “Tori Goes Platinum”

In the intervening weeks when Victorious isn’t on (or is trading off with iCarly), I worry that the show will lose its third season streak of magnificent episodes. Every single time it comes back, I’m proven wrong. The show continues to let its characters have big dreams, but keeps those dreams grounded in character traits, development, and conflict. That’s the reason I call it, only half-jokingly, “CommuniGlee” — because having big dreams is Glee‘s main area, and having strong character is Community‘s strength.

“Tori Goes Platinum” is, if possible, the highest point Victorious has ever reached. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on May 19, 2012 in The Archives, Victorious

 

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