A Deadly Adoption (2015)
June 20, 2015 10:05 PM - Subscribe

A successful couple house and care for a pregnant woman with the hopes of adopting her unborn child. A Lifetime movie with Will Ferrell and Kristen Wiig.
posted by Artw (20 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
She is a lot better at playing it straight than he is, by a considerable margin.
posted by Artw at 10:12 PM on June 20, 2015


The casting is baffling for sure. Did someone call in a favor?
posted by Burhanistan at 11:47 PM on June 20, 2015


She is a lot better at playing it straight than he is, by a considerable margin.

I disagree. I found that her playing it straight was more distracting than him, but that may just be because I recall her playing other things more straight historically, so it felt more like she was goofing even when she patently wasn't. I dunno. Might just be me.

The casting is baffling for sure. Did someone call in a favor?

Not even Lifetime knows:
Tanya Lopez, A+E Networks senior VP of original movies, tells Entertainment Weekly: "I don't know if we'll ever know whether it was a bet from a group of friends or [Will Ferrell] really wanted to do it ... We weren't clear if it was going to be authentic, if it really was going to be this murder story ... It's not a comedy. And it's well-done."
(Lifetime is a subsidiary of A+E Networks.)

I can only think that either:

A) Ferrell and Wiig wanted to see how well they work together (they've been in a few movies together, but I don't think they've ever really paired off), but didn't want the pressure of OH MY GOD WILL FERRELL AND KRISTEN WIIG IN A HUGE COMEDY MOVIE AND IT HAS TO MAKE $200 MILLION, or

2) It started as a joke, and then they realized it would be so very much more awesome to just play it 100 percent straight, or

C) They've seen how Adam Sandler gets paid to take vacations, and they thought, "Hey, let's go up to a nice little town and hang out for a month on someone else's dime."

Whatever Will and Kristen's strategy was, I'm certain it paid off in spades for Lifetime. I'm fairly certain that my entire household hasn't spent two hours and two minutes on Lifetime combined in the last decade, but we sure as hell watched this thing.
posted by Etrigan at 3:58 AM on June 21, 2015 [4 favorites]


Oh, this is real actual show?
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:29 AM on June 21, 2015


It is a real, actual show, and as far as I can tell not a parody,
posted by Artw at 6:32 AM on June 21, 2015


Ferrell and Wiig be trollin'.
posted by Burhanistan at 7:28 AM on June 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


I gotta check and see if I have this on Lifetime's On Demand channel. Wiig I am sure can do drama without going overboard, but Ferrell? Will Ferrell's appearances on Eastbound & Down (!) always played as too broad and sketch comedy for that show, so I dunno. But he does have kind of a James Brolin thing happening.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 7:34 AM on June 21, 2015


Ferrell's too funny-looking to be the leading man in one of these.
posted by infinitewindow at 8:19 AM on June 21, 2015


I just watched this. Sweet baby Jebus it was AWFUL! I only kept watching, thinking there was going to be some big comedy reveal. This has to be some kind of inside joke...
posted by pearlybob at 10:57 AM on June 21, 2015 [2 favorites]


Sweet baby Jebus it was AWFUL!

But for what it was, it was essentially perfect. Note by note, it was exactly what a Lifetime movie should be. It was a two-hour-and-two-minute shaggy dog joke.
posted by Etrigan at 2:32 PM on June 21, 2015 [3 favorites]


This isn't a mocking parody? It's a serious show? WTF?
posted by Justinian at 7:38 PM on June 21, 2015


Oh, it is a mocking parody, it's just mocking the network it appears on by playing it straight?
posted by Justinian at 7:39 PM on June 21, 2015


It's pretty clear that this is not Will Ferrell and/or Kristen Wiig trying to launch into a new phase of their careers, no. So in that sense, it's a little mocking.

Per the AV Club review:
Imagine if it had aired as the creators intended: A few people would tweet that there was the weirdest movie on Lifetime, then it would start trending, and people would tune in to bug out en masse about how straight-faced it all was. And the final moment, in which Ferrell and Wiig break into a weirdly exuberant dance party, would have killed.
I think that's probably the real reason it was done -- a long-form performance piece that should have been a delightful discovery, like Too Many Cooks. If you'd heard about Too Many Cooks for two months and there had been billboards before it aired and it was this huge Appointment Thing that people were salivating about, it would have been... pretty okay? I guess? I mean, the sorta follow-up thing with the fake medicine ad that turned into a horror story, that was a total letdown, because we knew it was coming.
posted by Etrigan at 7:47 PM on June 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


I read that same AV Club article a few days ago, and it did put this in context. If it had aired with zero fanfare some random Sunday night, people might be talking about it as this brilliant, weird comedy prank. But the way it went out, it just seems like a baffling career misstep for two huge stars. They were going for Too Many Cooks, and they got James Franco on General Hospital.

I mean, the sorta follow-up thing with the fake medicine ad that turned into a horror story, that was a total letdown, because we knew it was coming.

If you mean Unedited Footage of a Bear, I'm a little puzzled. First, AFAIK it's only a follow-up to Too Many Cooks in the sense that it came later. Second, I was under the impression it was put out there the same way, as a weird early morning thing nobody saw coming. And obviously this is subjective, but I sure wouldn't call Bear a letdown. I don't think it's supposed to be comedy. It's a mindfuck-y horror short with a bit of dark media satire in the mix. It is some brilliant, subversive, scary stuff.

I think Jon Benjamin and David Cross were the guys who first tried to sell Adult Swim on the idea of doing a freaky-ass fake infomercial thing, presented with a totally straight face at 3 AM. Little did they know they were pioneering a whole genre.
posted by Ursula Hitler at 10:08 PM on June 21, 2015


I mean, the sorta follow-up thing with the fake medicine ad that turned into a horror story, that was a total letdown, because we knew it was coming.

If you mean Unedited Footage of a Bear, I'm a little puzzled. First, AFAIK it's only a follow-up to Too Many Cooks in the sense that it came later.


That's why I said "sorta". And when I just googled "unedited footage of a bear", the first result that was not the thing itself starts "'Unedited Footage of a Bear,' the latest installment of the series that 'Too Many Cooks' made famous...". It certainly wasn't a literal sequel, but it was seen by many as at least a follow-up.

And obviously this is subjective, but I sure wouldn't call Bear a letdown. I don't think it's supposed to be comedy. It's a mindfuck-y horror short with a bit of dark media satire in the mix. It is some brilliant, subversive, scary stuff.

That's just what I'm talking about. If UFoaB had just appeared without being the next thing after TMC, it would have been judgeable on its own merits. But pretty much everyone made it into "The next Too Many Cooks!", and it suffered for that. (TMC has its own Wikipedia page and was parodied by CNN; UFoaB is just another in the List of programs broadcast by Adult Swim.)

Similarly, if ADA had just appeared on Lifetime without fanfare, as seems to have been the plan, I really believe that it would have become this huge "OMG TURN ON LIFETIME RIGHT FUCKING NOW" moment. This story would be over on the Blue and have 600 comments by now. As is, it's just... this thing that's weird, and I guess I kinda get that the joke is that there isn't a joke, and...
posted by Etrigan at 4:47 AM on June 22, 2015 [1 favorite]


If it had managed to surprise people it would have had some serious Andy Kaufman weirdness potential.

It's still a story, not just because they are comedians but huge stars, it has a surreal vibe. I imagine it will be funnier in memory than it is now. It will be a thing people google with incredulity for years.
posted by French Fry at 7:11 AM on June 23, 2015


FPP, please, from someone who has done the reading.
posted by Going To Maine at 11:15 AM on June 23, 2015




Oh good, the Fug Girls did a recap of a A Deadly Adoption, so now I don't have to watch it.
posted by orange swan at 5:05 PM on June 26, 2015


I am glad this exists, and that I saw it. There are still wonders and mysteries to be found in this life.
posted by prize bull octorok at 10:08 PM on June 26, 2015 [2 favorites]


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