I’ve completely fallen for SOAPNet’s first original scripted drama, Being Erica – so much so that I crammed it onto my way-too-crowded DVR list, the one I deemed too full to accommodate the likes of Parks & Recreation (despite my Amy Poehler love). And the Canadian import concluded its season Thursday, lost in the roar of mind-blowing big-network finales like Lost, Grey’s Anatomy, and 30 Rock. But Erica’s cliffhanger packed (almost) as much emotional punch as Grey’s – and, hey, even some Lostian mystery!
Erica follows a single career gal (Erin Karpluk) whose unconventional (and kinda sexy) psychotherapist Dr. Tom (Michael Riley) can zap her back to key screw-ups in her life so she can resolve her lingering feelings of guilt and remorse. She’s spent the season mustering up the courage to perform her poems in college, facing the affair that broke up her parents’ marriage, and trying every which way she could to stop best friend/soulmate Ethan from marrying someone else. (He did anyway, but now he’s finally split with that someone else and declared his love for Erica, thank goodness.)
In the finale, Erica faced the most traumatic event of her past: her brother Leo’s death. Dr. Tom agreed to send her back to the day he perished in a fire that ignited when he stomped off to smoke pot in a barn on the family vacation property. But she had to agree to only tell Leo how much he meant to her, not to stop his death. (We all know by now what happens when you screw with the space-time continuum, right? Disappearing from Polaroids, being forced to detonate nuclear bombs on weird islands in the 1970s….) Of course, she couldn’t help herself, and before she knew it, she was wrenched back into a warped version of her present-day life, where her now-grown-up brother was still alive – only to face a different death for Leo, this time killed in a car accident just before getting married. Chastened, she returned to Dr. Tom to apologize – and he gave her a do-over on going back to the past, but he was clearly angry. She fixed it, landed back in the “right” current life – and then discovered she has a creepy new therapist because Dr. Tom has “taken a leave.”
So what the heck happened? Who is this new therapist, and does she have the same magic powers? Where is Dr. Tom, and can I still get an appointment with him if I promise not to mess with my past too much? Consider this my official plea to SOAPNet to give us a season 2 of this rare find – a smart, funny single-girl show that’s shockingly relatable for being about a gal who can time travel.