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Not Dead Yet Series Premiere Season 1 Episode 1 and 2 Pilot Not A Tiger Yet Not Dead Yet Series Premiere Season 1 Episode 1 and 2 Pilot Not A Tiger Yet

Not Dead Yet

Not Dead Yet Series Premiere Review – Not a Tiger Yet (101 & 102)

NOT DEAD YET - “Not a Tiger Yet” – As Nell tries to settle into her new job, she gets increasingly annoyed by her latest ghost. Meanwhile, Edward works on a project that sparks Nell’s journalistic curiosity on “Not Dead Yet,” WEDNESDAY, FEB. 8 (9:30-10:00 p.m. EST), on ABC. (ABC/Lara Solanki) GINA RODRIGUEZ

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Not Dead Yet may have just premiered, but it’s a show that feels like you’re reconnecting with an old friend, and that’s largely due to Gina Rodriguez, a massive talent who just gets it and knows how to command a show and an audience. 

She is an old friend—if you were a fan of Jane the Virgin, and she brings that same energy and likability to the role of Nell Seranno, a mid-30-something who is being forced to start her life all over after her relationship imploded. 

While Nell is a character we’re meeting for the first time, it feels like we’re getting reacquainted with her just like her old friends from the paper where she snagged a job after returning from London. Long story short, Nell dropped everything to pursue a romance with Phillip, including a budding journalism career. When that didn’t pan out, she started back at square one, trying to pick up the very broken pieces and make sense of it all.

Upon returning to Los Angeles, her old co-workers, who now hold senior job titles, help her get her old job back, but unfortunately, she needs to earn back her, so she’s forced to take on the job that no one else wants—writing obituaries. 

Almost immediately, the series jumps into its wacky premise with Nell discovering, when she’s drunk on her birthday, no less, that she can see dead people. The first ghost to appear belongs to Monty, a man who wrote a despised children’s jingle. Nell tries to ignore Monty’s presence, but the more she runs, the more it becomes clear that all she does is run from her problems. When things get tough—she bolts. It’s no way to live a life, and Monty, who is already dead and has nothing to lose, isn’t afraid to tell it like it is. 

We learn a lot about Nell, and she learns a lot about herself, through her encounter with Monty. While the idea of seeing ghosts is comical on the surface, the series aims to leverage it on a deeper level. Eventually, Monty forces Nell to get out of the house, and while they’re at dinner, she musters up the courage to have a drink with his widow, Crickett, who ends up becoming a good and much-needed friend. You can find your people in the most unexpected of places. 

Nell has her work bestie, Sam, but Crickett becomes the unconventional friendship that we often don’t see on television; an older woman and a younger woman forming a bond! It’s a friendship I’m excited to explore as Crickett has a vigor for life that I can see being a good influence on Nell.

The ghosts—we don’t get to see all of the ones Nell deals with—all come into her life for a reason. Their journeys are short-lived as they don’t get to stick around for long, with many of them fading out the moment she turns in the obit, but they make an impression nonetheless and provide a lesson that makes Nell a better friend, employee, roommate, and human. 

Not Dead Yet Series Premiere Season 1 Episode 1 and 2 Pilot Not A Tiger Yet

NOT DEAD YET – “Pilot” – Nell attempts to restart her life in a new place with a new job and a new roommate. She begins writing obituaries at the local paper and starts getting life advice from an unlikely source on “Not Dead Yet,” WEDNESDAY, FEB. 8 (8:30-9:00 p.m. EST), on ABC. (ABC/Temma Hankin)
MARTIN MULL, GINA RODRIGUEZ

The second ghost, Jane, helps Nell unlock an inner confidence that she’s been lacking since returning to her old job. When we initially meet Nell, her life is a mess and doesn’t have much meaning. She doesn’t feel like she’s accomplished anything, nor does she truly understand her place in the world. After writing a handful of obits—and dealing with the pestering of the ghosts—she lets Jane the motivational speaker transform her life by helping her write an exposé. 

Lexi, the out-of-touch with reality magazine editor who is introduced as Nell’s former enemy-turned-boss, isn’t pleased that Nell went around her back to upload it online (which honestly should be illegal!), but she is happy with the positive feedback that her obits are getting. With the print world needing a little bit of a facelift, the fact that people are connecting to the obits means that Nell is doing something right. And that’s when she realizes that all she needs to do is embrace the here and now. She’s always chasing the next thing and never fully living in the present, but while looking like a crazy person while talking to yourself all day is enough to cause anyone whiplash, Nell has a real opportunity not only to shine but to make a difference. We thought the ghosts were put in place to help Nell, but in reality, she’s there to help them; She’s able to provide closure and tell a dead person’s one last story—the one of their life. 

I went into Not Dead Yet thinking that it was going to be a straightforward comedy, but it’s actually a heartfelt series chock-full of feel-good moments about life, death, and the in-between. It’s goofy, sure, but it finds the right balance between being comical and sincere. Like life, it never takes itself too seriously. It also helps that Rodriguez can act her butt off and seems passionate about bringing Nell’s story to audiences. 

The series also introduced her roommate, Edward, who is a little passive-aggressive at first, though we later learn that he’s autistic. He explains that there’s a method to the madness, and you can’t help but like him due to his straightforward nature. The series seamlessly works his ASD into the joke, with Nell putting her foot in her mouth and casually asking, “what do you have Asperger’s?” to which he provides a complex answer that indicates that he does. It’s clear being on the spectrum is going to play into his personality, likely teaching audiences about the developmental disorder in the process (and not just the stuff you see on TikTok), but it also doesn’t stop Nell from being totally honest with him, though she learns some empathy along the way. And my guess is that Edward is going to become a love interest at some point as they already went from being random roommates to friends who hang out at Crickett’s wine bar together and troll each other. 

I’ve read some pretty sour reviews about Not Dead Yet, and honestly, it might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it’s impressing the targeted audience. It’s a breezy show to watch with a likable cast and a fun premise, and sometimes, that’s all you need.

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Lizzy Buczak is the founder of CraveYouTV. What started off as a silly blog in her sophomore year at Columbia College Chicago turned her passion for watching TV into an opportunity! She has been in charge of CraveYou since 2011, writing reviews and news content for a wide variety of shows. Lizzy is a Music Business and Journalism major who has written for RADIO.COM, TV Fanatic, Time Out Chicago, Innerview, Pop’stache and Family Time.

Not Dead Yet

Not Dead Yet Season Finale Review – Is This the End of Seeing Ghosts? (209 and 210)

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Not Dead Yet wrapped up its second season with two back-to-back episodes that offered a bit of a gut-punch and shook up the dynamic at the SoCal Independent (SoCool Independent just didn’t take off, despite Lexi’s best efforts). It’s nice to know that even if she makes plenty of progress as a character, some core characteristics never change. 

We love Lexi for who she is, though it has been quite wonderful to see her grow in the role of the newspaper’s editor as well as a friend to Nell and a partner to Edward. Who knew that by the end of season 2, she’d be the most promising character on this little sitcom with a pulse?

But losing a pulse during the finale episodes was not only the newspaper itself, which Lexi’s tycoon businessman father Duncan Rhodes, sold off, but Duncan himself, when he collapsed and ended up teetering the line between the land of the living and the land of the dead. 

Since Nell pre-wrote his obit as a favor a few episodes ago (see how they planned that out?), she was able to see him as a “ghost” even if he wasn’t exactly declared just yet. 

At first, Duncan was convinced he was immortal and Nell was a witch, but pretty soon, he realized he was on the brink of death and decided to help her get her life together and nail a job interview with one of the “buzzards” that was brought in after the newspaper sale. 

Duncan and Nell—or, to be more specific Brad Garrett and Gina Rodriguez–created magic on our TV screens together, and it was nice to see them bonding in such an uninhibited way. It’s a rarity from Duncan. 

While Duncan gave Nell more confidence in herself, she was definitely more essential in helping him find a genuine connection with his daughter, Lexi, which helped bring him back from crossing the bridge, just as the doctor delivered the news that the surgery on his ticker went well. 

Nell was also able to see firsthand the impact that her job has on the people that are saying goodbye to their loved ones; she’s helping people pass on and allowing them to tell their craft their story one last time, while also helping those who are grieving and morning form a more genuine connection with the ones they lost. 

However, Duncan also pointed out that Nell should be making a fortune off of her extraordinary gift, and while a third season of the show is not guaranteed as it hasn’t been renewed just yet, I’m wondering if that would be something that would be touched upon. 

Nell has come around to writing obits and embraced chatting with ghosts for altruistic reasons, but Duncan’s right—there’s money to be made here. We should explore it. Heck, most people there already think she’s a freak that talks to herself. 

And then there’s the big cliffhanger of a twist: does Duncan remember what happened during his visit to the great beyond? Initially, it seems like there’s no memory as he was just stuck in a black void, but as Nell’s question forces him to focus more on his time in the coma, he remembers the feeling of being stuck in a Prius. And then… a lightbulb goes off as he givesher this knowing look. 

For the sake of entertainment, it would be fantastic for someone to finally be “in” on Nell’s big secret, and if it’s Duncan, it propels the whole “how to monetize this opportunity” narrative forward. However, he could just laugh it off as a silly dream—he is Duncan after all, though as the papers new landlord, it does seem like he’ll be sticking around for awhile. 

We’ve also seen Nell grow into her own, not just accepting the gift of seeing ghosts, but also embracing where she is in life—and accepting that it might not be what she planned. She went from this lost soul who was heartbroken and looking to find her footing again, to someone confident in who she is, what she does, and what she wants from the future. She’s kickstarted the journey of freezing her eggs, and instead of caving in on her plans when TJ revealed he doesn’t want kids, she accepted that their love story wasn’t meant to be, all while keeping a space for him in her life as a friend. It’s called growing as a person—and we love to see it. 

I hope this isn’t the end of our adventures with Nell seeing dead people, butwWe’ll see which way the wind blows for Not Dead Yet–either way, it’s been an enjoyable and breezy Wednesday night watch. 

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Not Dead Yet

Not Dead Yet Recap Season 2 Episode 2 – Not a Valentine Yet

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Not Dead Yet Recap Season 2 Episode 2 - Not a Valentine Yet

There’s nothing like Valentine’s Day to remind you of your single status, and nothing more offputting when meeting a potential new suitor than seeing his dead mother who is eager to third wheel the first date. 

And that was exactly Nell’s predicament on Not Dead Yet Season 2 Episode 2, an episode that embraced Valentine’s Day even if it was crushing for many of its leading ladies. 

I’ll be the first to say that I’m so glad ABC renewed this series. From the getgo, I felt that Gina Rodriguez effortlessly fit into the role, but the second season just feels so natural for everyone—it’s like they’ve really embraced their characters and have a clear path ahead. 

Nell’s visions of dead people are still as problematic to living her life as they were in season 1, and when she meets a hot new guy (who is not dead this time!) who offers to share a love muffin with her, she’s ecstatic that she doesn’t have a deceased person interrupting at every moment. That is until Dennis sends her another obit and the dead person is not only a senator but the mother of said hot man. 

On one hand, she was helpful because she encouraged Nell to get out of her comfort zone and go on a date with her son, Andres, but on the other hand, Nell quickly learned that it was a manipulation tactic as she wanted to use Nell to finally tell her son that he’s a terrible artist. 

The woman wasn’t wrong—the painting’s eyes were so off—but it was an unfair ask considering it would make things particularly awkward for Nell. Though she initially refused, the senator made a compelling point that this was her only shot at helping her son with the truth, since she never worked up the nerve to tell him when she was alive. 

And maybe, she suggested, this was the purpose behind seeing dead people—she could help them get the closure they needed to “pass on.”

Nell eventually delivered it straight to Andres, but the man already knew that his art was no good, and he was only doing it because his mother invested so much in this career that he didn’t want to let her down. The moral of the story is that you should always say what’s in your heart, even if you think it might hurt the other person because the outcome might be better than you ever imagined. 

Andres, however, realized that his grief was much more intense than he initially believed, which ruined any potential romantic moments, yet Nell, who has dealt with plenty of baggage of her own, was understanding and willing to wait around for the right moment. 

The important thing is that she put herself out there and said “yes” when she wanted to say “no” because it was the safer choice. That alone means it was a successful Valentine’s Day. And she had plenty of friends to fall back on, including Sam, who was a little unhinged when her husband’s flights were canceled and he didn’t make it back for their romantic dinner. She was under the impression that their marriage was doomed due to a “seven-year curse,” when in reality, the only thing the “curse” was doing was making her spiral out of control.

Nell’s wedding gift Crockpot came in handy as they all enjoyed some fondue—and found out that Tina from the office is quite a freak. But honestly, sometimes Vday with your besties is far better than any romantic date! 

Nell might be the main character—and we’ll always root for her—but there’s another storyline that’s taking priority and heating up quickly and unexpectedly; the rendezvous between Lexi and Edward. 

On paper, these two make zero sense, but in reality, the chemistry is undeniable, and they both seem to bring out a better side in the other. Edward gets more confidence around Lexi, while she softens up around him, but for now, no one knows about their hookups in the storage closet—though I’m willing to bet Nell will soon realize that he’s hanging around her work way more than he needs to be. 

What did you think of the episode? 

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Why I’m Excited for Gina Rodriguez’s Return to TV in ‘Not Dead Yet’

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Alright, I admit it—I’m really excited about ABC’s Not Dead Yet premiering tonight, Feb 8.

I wasn’t able to secure a screener, so I haven’t watched it yet—this is not an official review.

The network is putting a lot of faith in the series, hoping to hook audiences with two back-to-back episodes of the new Gina Rodriguez-led comedy that toes the line between reality and the afterlife. 

The most obvious reason for my excitement? I’m a huge Gina Rodriguez fan, and while she’s starred in plenty of movies as of late, this marks her official return to the small screen as a leading lady since Jane the Virgin. And we all know that too many people snoozed on JTV

Not Dead Yet also promises to add to ABC’s impressive comedy slate—with hits like Abbott Elementary, Home Economics, The Conners, and The Goldbergs—the network knows what it’s doing, so I don’t think they’d add the sitcom unless they were confident it was going to be a bonafide hit. It’s also getting an Abbott Elementary lead, hoping to hook all those fans to stick around for a bit longer. 

The premise of a woman seeing dead people isn’t exactly new—see: Ghosts—but it is a successful one, nonetheless, and provides plenty of opportunity for witty, wacky, emotional, and unique storytelling, while also remaining grounded through a relatable protagonist that’s dealing with worldly issues like breakups and trying to solidify a career in journalism. 

Ghosts’ success bodes well for Not Dead Yet, but the shows also have another thing going for them/in common—The CW. Much like Rose McIver, Rodriguez comes from a series with a quirky premise and has the subtle comedy acting chops to sell it. We believed her when she was a pregnant virgin, so you’re damn right I’ll believe her when she claims to be talking to dead people. She can sell drama, she can sell comedy, she can sell dramedy. I’m in. 

The current TV landscape is perfectly positioned for Not Dead Yet to become a bonafide hit that sweeps the awards circuit next fall. And even if it doesn’t, all it needs to do is make you laugh like no one’s watching. 

Here’s the official Not Dead Yet synopsis:

Nell Stevens, a broke and newly single self-described disaster, works to restart the life and career she left behind 10 years ago; when she lands the only job she can find — writing obituaries, she starts getting life advice from an unlikely source.
 

 
The series premieres with two episodes on Wednesday, Feb. 8 on ABC and will be available for streaming on Hulu the very next day.

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