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Series / The Curious Creations of Christine McConnell

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Our cast (clockwise from center: Christine, Edgar, Rose, and Rankle

Christine: We've all had a late-night guest or a hungry little critter craving a bedtime snack, but midnight is no time to get lazy - and the kitchen of the perfect hostess never sleeps.
Rankle: Who is she talking to?!
Episode 1.

The Curious Creations of Christine McConnell is, to boil it down to its bare essence, Martha Stewart meets the Addams Family meets Sesame Street. It follows Christine as a sort of artsy-domestic home artisan, making treats and crafts along with a collection of colorful creatures (themselves artfully created and puppeteered by the Jim Henson Studios): Rose (a slovenly and libidinous patchwork reanimated creation made of essentially roadkill), Rankle (the prissy and sarcastic mummy of an ancient Egyptian cat), and Edgar (an earnest, awkward humanoid wolflike creature recovering from an addiction to human flesh and blood). Recurring characters include Norman, Christine's boyfriend who is probably a serial killer and Vivienne (played by famed burlesque performer Dita Von Teese) the ghost who only appears in the mirrors.

This series provides examples of

  • 13 Is Unlucky: The month is unknown but Rose's birthday, as featured in episode five, is on the thirteenth and falls on a Friday.
  • Alliterative Title: The title has a lot of hard "C" sounds.
  • Asshole Victim: Evelyn is shown to be snobbish and unpleasant before her Axe-Crazy side is shown, but she meets her demise in episode six.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: The chocolate plates and teacups Christine makes in episode 4. While beautifully made, its a lot of work to make edible serving ware that’s fragile and will likely impact the taste of the food placed on it. It’s lampshaded when Rankle and Evelyn both ask if Christine has real chinaware.
  • Big Eater: Rose and Edgar both have big appetites.
  • Blade Below the Shoulder: One of Rose's hands is a fork.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: A recurring gag is that Christine will often give instructions for making her dishes to us, the audience, but other characters like Rose and Rankle will shake their heads quizzically, wondering who she's talking to.
  • Call-Back: Visually. In episode six when Christine is making the shrunken head cookies, at one point you can see that the kitchen island is decorated with several of the creepy candles - resembling trees with jack-o-lantern faces - that she made for Mr Ketchum in episode two.
    • In one episode, the Mail Lady is mentioned several times (Bernard likes to 'go jogging' with her); in episode five it's revealed she's in hospital because of Bernard, and the paper Christine reads implies that it was taken as a wolf attack.
  • Cats Are Superior: Rankle is very haughty and doesn’t hesitate to remind others that he was once worshipped in Ancient Egypt. With the comebacks he throws at other characters, Rankle can also count as Cats Are Snarkers.
  • Costume Porn: Christine wears some stunning dresses on the show.
  • Disney Death: Rose dies in the last episode, stabbed by Evelyn. She gets better, through the judicious application of lightning.
  • Do Wrong, Right: In episode 2 Christine discovers that Rose, Rankle, and Edgar have been torturing their neighbor, Mr. Ketchum, with a suspended blade in their basement. She chides them because the blade wasn’t securely attached and not because they kidnapped and tortured someone in the first place.
    • In episode five, Rose, upset from the Forgotten Birthday trope, is preparing to burn down the house. Christine catches her and chides her for leaving behind fingerprints; apparently the first rule of arson is 'never leave evidence'.
  • Doing It for the Artinvoked: In episode 2 Rose lampshades that Christine could easily buy a lot of what she makes ready-made, but Christine happily makes her own treats from scratch anyway.
  • Evil Redhead: Christine’s cousin Evelyn counts as this.
  • Evil Smells Bad: Edgar is suspicious of Norman because of this. It also plays into Norman’s Ambiguously Evil status and the implication that he’s a serial killer.
  • Fairytale Motif: Episode three shows Christine preparing wolf paw doughnuts to take to her grandmother and leaving the house in a red dress with a cloak to match. While not lampshaded its clearly a reference to Little Red Riding Hood.
  • The Fashionista: Vivienne has traits of this, giving fashion advice and helping Christine pick out fabric and colors for her evening dress.
  • Feminine Women Can Cook: Technically Christine does more baking than cooking but the same principle applies.
  • Flowers of Romance: Norman and Vivienne’s boyfriend both bring bunches of flowers as gifts.
  • Food Porn: And how! The treats that Christine makes on the show are something to behold.
  • Foreshadowing: see Freeze-Frame Bonus.
  • Forgotten Birthday: Rose gets a small dose of this, thinking Christine, Rankle and Edgar have forgotten her birthday when Christine sends her down to the basement to clean up without wishing her happy birthday. They're actually doing it so her party is a surprise, along with the special cake Christine's making to resemble Rose.
  • Four Is Death: played with. Rose's body was sewn together from the parts of four dead animals before she was resurrected; as a tribute, her birthday cake is made from four quadrants, each with a different flavor cake and buttercream.
  • Freaky Is Cool: Basically the whole premise of the show.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus: In episode five, at one point Christine reads the local newspaper, "The Curious Times", which not only has several jokes (the issue is 666, the logo is a brain wearing a crown), there's also some Foreshadowing: the headline (discussed by Christine) is that a local maniac is killing sex offenders heavily implied to be Norman, and is already up to six. There's also a mention of a mail lady attacked by a wolf (we know it was actually Bernard the basement monster), an opinion piece saying 'shotgun weddings are out; crossbow weddings are in' Edgar gets a crossbow as a Halloween present and a second local heritage building has been burned down the first was Evelyn's parent's house - with them inside, this second building was the insane asylum she was sent to in episode four, which foreshadows Evelyn's return in episode six.
  • Friend to Bugs: One of Christine’s housemates is a giant hairy spider named Lucille, who gives her a wake-up crawl in the morning.
  • Gasshole: The first thing that Rose does after she’s reanimated a second time is passing gas rather loudly.
  • Gentle Giant: Edgar is the biggest and the strongest character but he's actually quite shy and the least violent.
  • The Ghost: Vivienne literally; in the sense of this trope, probably the Mail Lady. It's mentioned several times that Bernard the basement monster loves to 'go jogging with her' (it's implied he's actually crushing on her). Later, it's mentioned that she's in the hospital after Bernard bit off her leg (and possibly an ear); he seems quite disappointed when Rose tells him the hospital won't let him in to visit her.
  • Girls Love Chocolate: Christine often bakes chocolate treats and Rose is always happy to eat them.
  • Halloween Special: episode six takes place on Halloween; the household treats it more like Christmas, including presents beneath a small dead tree decorated with shrunken head cookies!
  • Jacob Marley Apparel: Vivienne, being a ghost, doesn’t have the number of costume changes as Christine does. Averted in episode 6 when Vivienne greets her beau wearing a shiny backless dress for their night out on Halloween, showing off what appear to be a half-dozen gunshot wounds.
  • Lady in Red: Four of Christine’s outfits are red including the evening dress she wears for her dinner date with Norman.
  • Meaningful Name: the word 'Rankle' means to annoy or irritate someone, which describes Rankle's interaction with Rose (on both sides); Rose means pink and she likes it a lot. Edgar may be a Shout-Out to Edgar Allan Poe.
  • Occult Blue Eyes: Rankle has noticeably blue eyes but it’s unknown if they were that blue (if at all) prior to his mummification and resurrection.
  • Perky Goth: The aesthetic of the show is something like this.
  • Pink Is Feminine: Christine has a few pink outfits, but Rose plays this straight because her hair bow is pink as are most of the treats, decorations, and gifts at her birthday party in episode 5. It’s also fitting because Rose means “pink” in French.
  • Raven Hair, Ivory Skin: Christine and Vivienne.
  • Really Gets Around: Rose apparently has frequent rendezvous with the neighborhood dogs and an inanimate garden gnome.
  • Scenery Porn: The series primarily takes place inside a mansion where Christine lives and makes good use of some beautifully decorated rooms.
  • Self-Made Orphan: It’s strongly implied that Evelyn purposefully started the house fire that killed her parents.
  • Serial-Killer Killer: Norman, who we meet in Episode 3, apparently preys on sex offenders.
  • Sweet Tooth: Norman states in episode three that he usually prefers sweet dishes over savory ones.
  • Textile Work Is Feminine: Christine sews her own evening dress in episode 3 and makes an elegant hat in episode 4.
  • True Blue Femininity: At least two of Christine’s outfits are blue.
  • The Unintelligible: Bernard the basement monster speaks in growls, though Rose understands him and they talk back and forth the most.
  • Quirky Household: Christine, a human baker, is sharing her home with a reanimated (mostly) raccoon (Rose), a resurrected Egyptian cat (Rankle), a werewolfish beast (Edgar), a ghost (Vivienne), and a monster in the basement (Bernard). There's also a tentacled something in the refrigerator (Milly), and we once saw a furry being in her closet handing her dresses (though that could also be the monster in the basement; Christine doesn't address the closet monster by name and Bernard could actually have the run of the house)
  • X Days Since: 8 days since the last fatality. If they make it two more days, they get banana splits!