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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Acting Butcherer

In my recent survey of television (after getting one for the first time in five years), absolutely the worst actor I've encountered in any major role is Jennifer Love Hewitt in The Ghost Whisperer. She basically has a single gesture that makes up the entirety of her "acting" repertoire: she scrunches her eyebrows together in a move that is supposed to show "caring."

But Jennifer does not stop there: she is also the English Butcherer. She says, for instance, "Whenever a ghost comes to me in anyway, it's looking for help somehow."

Now, remove the words "in anyway" and "somehow" from that sentence. We get "Whenever a ghost comes to me, it's looking for help." Simpler, stronger, more direct: so why did some writer put in those seemingly superfluous words? There was a strategy there, but what was it?

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