More Tales of the City charts the continued adventures of the residents of Barbary Lane in San Francisco, once again based on an eponymous novel by Armistead Maupin.
Having come into a small inheritance from her late boss, Mary Ann (Laura Linney) books herself and Mouse (Paul Hopkins) on a cruise. Here they meet the mysterious, Burke (Colin Ferguson) and Mary Ann promptly falls in love. The relationship isn’t easy though as Burke has amnesia and is affected by the strangest collection of things. Meanwhile Mouse runs into an old flame and realises things might not actually be over.
Feeling unhappy with the direction her life is taking, Mona (Nina Siemaszko) decides to take a trip to Nevada and ends up uncovering some secrets from her past. Meanwhile Mrs Madrigal (Olympia Dukakis) worries about Mona’s whereabouts while keeping an eye on Brian (Whip Hubley) who has developed a strange infatuation with his opposite neighbour. And Dede (Barbara Garrick) and Beauchamp (Thomas Gibson) separate when he discovers he’s not the father of her babies.
Initially I found More Tales of the City quite jarring. Mouse, Mona and Brian are all being played by different actors and it takes a fair bit of adjusting to. Once I got used to them the story started to flow and I started to enjoy it more.
There were some great story lines and characters. I absolutely loved Mother Mucca (Jackie Burroughs), the old, sweary whorehouse owner and her interactions with Mona. It was nice seeing Mouse find love and DeDe start to break out of the prison of her marriage and her societal obligations.
There are some absolutely bonkers story lines though… I am talking amnesia, cults, temporarily paralysis, a haven for women over 60 where young studs are kept as sex slaves… and this is combined with a level of coincidence that is so implausible that it must be intentional. It’s kind of like a crazy soap opera but with great characters and excellent performances.
If you can suspend your disbelief and just go with it there are some wonderfully heartwarming moments as well as some hilarious ones. Olympia Dukakis is wonderful and Anna Madrigal is absolute goals for life and womanhood and I want to be her when I grow up. Laura Linney embodies the now more confident Mary Ann and I grew to love new Mouse but new Brian was a bit meh… then again Brian is a bit of a dickhead anyway.
Not quite as good as the first one but still a great watch for the amazing 70’s setting.