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Maya Rudolph can do anything she sets her mind to and that includes playing dead. The premise of Amazon Prime Video's Forever starts out following Rudolph's June as she copes with her husband's death after a skiing accident. While it's a shame to see Fred Armisen's Oscar (supposedly) disappear by the end of the first episode of the series, the promise of watching a series about June coping with her own grief and loss is enough to keep viewers hooked through the first few episodes. And then June dies.
What follows is June and Oscar's trip through the afterlife, which looks a lot like a suburban neighborhood complete with kooky neighbors who pop in and out. Yes, it sounds like The Good Place. But Rudolph's June is by no means an Eleanor Shellstrop, or even any sort of version like the NBC character. June is complex, layered, openly grieves, questions her own mortality even after death, and Rudolph is able to convey all those emotions and more with a simple forlorn look — and also while singing karaoke. She's allowed a full range to do so, letting the character try and fail at times, and even flail which is still, in this day in age, rare for a female character on television. Rudolph is by no means a stranger to the Emmys race, having been nominated for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series in both 2012 and 2018. But it's time she enters the race as a leading actress for her work in Forever.
Forever - Show - Rudolph - Armisen - Counterpart
While Forever is very much a two-handed show between Rudolph and Armisen, the former is clearly leaps and bounds beyond her counterpart in terms of story and also performance. Armisen is, as usual, bumbling along being his weird self (not like that's a bad thing). Here, Rudolph...
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