The long-awaited and scandal generating Sex and the City knock-off Cashmere Mafia from SatC creator Darren Star will premiere this Sunday, and reviewers have already taken out a hit on it. Just like in Sex, Mafia centers around four women in the big city, but these women are more interested in boardrooms than bedrooms...or something. Lucy Liu plays the Carrie Bradshavian lead, Mia, who works in publishing but on the business side. The other three characters do other business-y type stuff but their descriptions bored me to tears, so I'll just mention that one of them is flirting with lesbianism. Anyhoo, the critical reception of Mafia has been uniformly terrible (reviewers have called the characters "parodies", "caricatures" and "stereotypes"), save for the South Florida Sun Sentinel, which calls the show "slick and exquisitely cast." (Maybe they've let all that Florida sun bleach their brains.) Check out the rest of the critical carnage after the jump.
The Boston Herald:
"Cashmere Mafia" seems designed to distract viewers with the heroines' dazzling wardrobes. But clothes don't make a woman, nor do they make a show.
The Alphabet web trots out another uninspired hour about women attempting to balance fabulous lives and careers with romance, but other than a lesbian liaison, it all feels about as fresh as "That Girl." Each member wrestles with romance, while their frenetically paced careers are wholly nondescript. Beyond the main foursome, meanwhile, the other women in the show are almost uniformly predatory — conniving bitches eager to entice those overwhelmed and emasculated husbands.
New York Daily News:
"Cashmere Mafia" also feels rushed, as if the creators sensed their material is so familiar, they can't afford any foreplay. Sexual identity crises, insensitive men who do incredibly lunkheaded things, and whispers of spousal cheating all surface in the first episode, as if each character has a checklist of traumas and might as well start enduring them right now. This serves neither the viewers nor the actors.
San Jose Mercury News:
The biggest problem is that the women populating "Cashmere" seem to be more caricatures than characters. It's as if Starr [sic] was trying to fill out the roster of a reality show with stock types — and various hair colors — and forgot to make them warm, interesting and/or engaging.
South Florida Sun-Sentinel:
It's slick and exquisitely cast. The characters are easy to believe and easier still to look at. Naturally, the clothes are fabulous, too. Most importantly, for those drawn to this kind of melodrama, the stories invite emotional investment.
The clothes are glamorous and the settings are chic, but the lives of these women are parodies of businesswomen, or perhaps stereotypes...For a series like "Cashmere Mafia" to survive, there would have to be practically no other dramas to watch and, whaddya know, that just might be the case, as more scripted shows fall victim to the writers strike.
As The New 'City,' 'Cashmere' Simply Unravels [Boston Herald]
Cashmere Mafia Review [Variety]
'Cashmere Mafia' Is Spinning Familiar Yarn [New York Daily News]
'Cashmere Mafia' Is A Little Threadbare [San Jose Mercury News]
Expect Sexy, Sudsy Corporate Intrigue On 'Cashmere Mafia' [South Florida Sun-Sentinel]
Cashmere Mafia Review [Hollywood Reporter]