Moving on to the acting…
Originally Posted by archiguy
Dude, she didn't act well enough for a good community theater
Dude, if my daughter gave a performance like Underwood’s on a high school stage, I would be calling the principal the next day, demanding to know why my tax dollars were not going for better drama teachers.
So that’s point one. This is not about Broadway vs. off-Broadway vs. off-off-off-off-Broadway. You can’t get far enough from Broadway to make Underwood’s acting in SOML acceptable, and still be on planet Earth.
Originally Posted by slowbiscuit
The problem I have is with people saying that Carrie definitively cannot act or sing good enough for what it was (a live TV show),
But that’s the whole point. It wasn’t a TV show, live or otherwise, in the conventional sense.
What it was was televised theatre
Originally Posted by dattier
Playing to a seated audience at some distance in a large theater and playing to cameras that are much closer to you might require very similar talents but differing honed skills.
Theatrical acting requires exaggerated gestures and facial expressions so that people in the back row can catch them without the aid of a camera close-up. Stage actors need to PROJECT when they speak; they have to be LOUD, even when they portray a whisper
But theatrical acting looks hammy on screen, where good camera work allows much more information to be communicated in a much subtler way, which is why that style of acting hasn’t been done in movies since the silent era.
Originally Posted by hooked01
To be fair, I think all the performers were all wooden or too flamboyant. Steven Moyer looked like he didn't want to be there and mumbled all his lines. The "Broadway" pros over exaggerated their delivery as if they were on the live stage projecting to the last row of the theatre.
The younger kids get a pass just because they're kids.
Exactly! Because it was televised theatre
SNL is live TV. The Buffy the Vampire Slayer
episode Once More, with Feeling
is a TV musical. Both feature screen style acting, appropriate for TV.
There’s just no reason to do theatrical style acting on TV, unless your purpose is to convey the look, tone, feel, and overall experience of live theatre into the TV viewing room. Which is why NBC built the large theatrical sets and the stage vets did theatrical acting.
And then Underwood came in like a wrecking ball and thoroughly destroyed the theatrical experience thus created.
(Moyer’s acting didn’t bother me nearly as much as Underwood’s; I cringed more when he sang. And I thought the kids did fine, again judged by theatrical standards, not screen standards.)
I do understand, though, why people who want to see this as just TV might scratch their heads that Underwood is being singled out for such hate. Because by screen standards, none of the acting was good, and Underwood’s performance doesn’t stand out nearly as much.
Originally Posted by Otto Pylot
It was, after all, just television.
Trouble is, only Underwood benefits by this reduction; the show as a whole does not.
Judged as TV, only the singing is good. But if that’s all people want, why not just give Underwood a Christmas special like Michael Bublé? Presumably the Underwood fans would tune in, so NBC could get great ratings without nearly the production costs of a theatrical production.
Originally Posted by rdclark
I don't think most people disagree that Underwood's performance as an actress was sub-par. I'm just not ready to condemn her to eternal perdition solely on the basis of this one show.
Agreed. When the performance is this bad, some of the onus has to go on the directors and producers. Surely they could see in rehearsals that Underwood’s performance would be embarrassing, but they obviously didn’t care.
I wish I could say that surprised me, but if there’s once thing today’s “reality”-strewn TV landscape proves, it’s that stopping people from being embarrassed on TV is not in any TV executive’s job description.