The creator of Bunheads is Amy Sherman-Palladino (I don't make these names up, promise) the woman behind Gilmore Girls. It is basically Gilmore Girls round two, it has many of the same actors, the same incidental music (la la, la la, laaa laaa) and the same witty script.
It's about ballerinas, bunheads, in small town California. Into this life walks Michelle, a Vegas dancer who marries an admirer one drunken night and goes home with him to discover he lives with his mother, Fanny Flowers (really, I am not making up these names, promise) who is played by the sublime Kelly Bishop. I adore Kelly Bishop and she is truly fantastic in this. I didn't think she could get better than Emily Gilmore but she surpasses herself. She runs the local dance school. Her son is Hubbell which amuses me no end because of The Way We Were and it reminds me of my favourite scene in Sex and the City. Television has become so ironic and self reverential, it can be hard to keep up with pop culture references but I am pretty sure the target audience of Bunheads gets the Hubbell name check. Hubbell is played by Alan Ruck, Cameron from Ferris Bueller. You know, with casting decisions like that I feel Amy and I could be best buddies. We don't see much of Hubbell (no spoilers here) but when we do, it's worth it.
In addition to the grown-ups, we have the teenagers and all of them are fun to watch. We have the bitch, the good girl, the tomboy and the pretty one. We have quirky townsters, my favourite being Truly who is played by Mindy from Friday Night Lights in a very different part. Kirk from Gilmore Girls also pops up in one episode playing a barista, it's hilarious, trust me. And in the last few episodes, we've had the joy of Paris (Liza Weil) appear. It's always a pleasure to see Paris in anything.
Bunheads is fun, it has some great lines and it zips alone entertainingly. The woman playing Michelle (Sutton Foster - no, me neither) is basically Lauren Graham all over again and that's no bad thing. And everyone can really dance. The dance scenes are very odd but weirdly watchable. Check this one out.
I don't yet love it as much as Gilmore Girls but that's a tough act to follow.