by Ken Korman
“Dying is easy, comedy is hard” goes the old show business cliché. But those words seem to ring especially true when applied to filmed media of every type. The recent advent of web-based series has provided a new forum for original comedy that bypasses the need for large budgets and corporate distribution networks, but few have embraced the medium and made it their own. All of which makes the creative success of locally made web series Least Favorite Love Songs even more remarkable.
Created by married filmmaking partners Helen Krieger and Joseph Meissner — and recently honored by the prestigious Webby Awards — Least Favorite Love Songs chronicles the romantic misadventures of pot-addled Molly Mueller (Krieger) as she struggles to sort her personal life, finish her first writing assignment for a local newspaper, and ward off unwanted advances and spiritual advice from her paranoid drug dealer (Meissner). Consisting so far of eight six-to-eight-minute episodes and various bonus videos, the series sometimes recalls the “earlier, funnier” films of Woody Allen — many of the best moments arrive in the form of throwaway lines delivered by surprisingly endearing characters. Krieger and Meissner wisely enlisted many of New Orleans’ top improv comedians to appear on the show, including Cecile Monteyne, Tami Nelson and Chris Trew, all of whom appear to be having the time of their lives. Comedy may not be easy, but it should always be a lot of fun.
Least Favorite Love Songs is available for free viewing at leastfavoritelovesongs.com. The series will receive a rare public screening tonight, Tuesday, May 20, at 8 p.m. at the Indywood Theater, 630 Elysian Fields. Helen Krieger and Joseph Meissner will be in attendance for a post-screening Q&A. More info here.