Review Apple TV+ series ‘Shrinking’ – SerieTotaal
Less wacky than the official description promises, but otherwise just a great comedy-drama series.
The DVD cover of an obvious B-movie promised time travel and dinosaur encounters. When the credits rolled, neither had passed. It’s not as colorful, but lately the concise descriptions of some movies and series have not been entirely honest. The official synopsis of Contraction Seems like a good therapist suddenly turned into an uninhibited Dr. Phil turns and happens to have a hit with him. That’s a bit of an exaggeration, because this only happens in the first episode. Also unnecessary, because it’s a good series anyway.
Jimmy has been a widower for some time. As a therapist, he is so preoccupied with other people’s problems that he cannot solve his own. One day, he is tired of his patients’ inconvenience and takes a completely different tack. He even takes on a new patient. The two colleagues in his practice have their doubts about this, but this seems to help at first. Even for Jimmy himself.
From that point on Contraction mostly a series that focuses on Jimmy, his daughter, his co-workers and a few people he befriends. The therapeutic theme remains present in the form of characters dealing with their obstacles, but Jimmy is no longer often seen taking a wild approach in sessions with him.
One drawback is that Jimmy and the people around him speak the same way despite their different characters. The dialogues have a certain style that applies to all the characters. That feels a bit contrived. On the other hand, they are funny comments that everyone makes.
Jimmy is played by Jason Segel and the way he delivers his jokes shows that he’s been on a sitcom for years. He’s certainly not bad, but in a “I’m saying something you should laugh at” tone. He often goes for a bit of a choked statement, too, which can be nerve wracking.
Harrison Ford is also in it, while the one from 1923 He just made his transition from film to series. Despite the fact that he also participates in the colored comments, his character is otherwise the typical gruff man that we have seen him play more often in recent years. I have no idea what convinced him to take on this role. Maybe he likes the series, but soon we will see him again on the big screen as Indiana Jones.
It’s not very disturbing, but it’s not always easy to sympathize with some characters. Jimmy’s neighbor is one of her best friends, but she is sometimes very demanding. Jimmy’s best friend is the stereotypical “it’s all about me” gay character on the regular. That diversity is fine, but there are also gays who don’t have to be the center of attention all the time. Jimmy’s daughter is a teenager and therefore your standard long-fingered teenager who has something to complain about about everything.
What is refreshing is Jessica Williams, who plays one of Jimmy’s colleagues. Yes, she also has those witty remarks and loves indie-pop rock like all the characters, but her presence is a bit lighter and more joyous. That fits well in this series, which balances with the heavier dramatic moments. That is something in which Contraction he certainly did.
The last episode can initially be seen as a perfect conclusion because the story may end with it, but a second season is also still a possibility. And then comes the final scene with an icy cliffhanger. Therefore, the series itself seems to suffer a bit from the uncertainty that the characters are trying to shake off.
Contraction can be seen in AppleTV+.