Yep, Extraordinary (Disney+) is exactly what it sets out to be: extraordinary.
In a world where everyone gets a power with some degree of usefulness, when turning eighteen years of age, our central character Jen (Máiréad Tyers) has missed out. Whilst those around her can fly, shapeshift, turnback brief periods of time, channel the dead or even generate volcanic orgasms with a mere touch, she at the age of twenty-five, can do none of that. And so, in a desperate attempt to acquire a power, any power, she attempts to stimulate her body into developing one.
Jen is helped in her quest by long time friend and flatmate Carrie (Sofia Oxenham) and Carrie’s jobless boyfriend, Kash (Bilal Hasna). Believing that stress could trigger the desired reaction in Jen, her flatmates attempt to put her in stressful situations. One of which is her being abducted by Kash and locked in the boot of a car. As you watch, use your own powers to identify the reason this scene should have progressed.
When all else fails Jen has to raise £9500 to pay for special treatment at a private clinic.
From the outset the scripts, from creator and writer Emma Moran, have a good gag rate, pretty much all of which land smoothly. The opening scene is a job interview during which we learn that the interviewer’s thing (power) is getting candidates to tell the truth. The CGI is excellent throughout as is the lip syncing from Carrie. Part of the visual fascination is watching what powers (super or otherwise) are being exposed in the background as Jen goes about her life. Jen currently works at a party shop run by Ange (Darcey Porter-Cassidy), a sixty-year-old woman who acts her age but has the appearance of not having yet reached puberty (whether that qualifies as a power, super or otherwise, is debateable).
A subtext is the sibling rivalry between Jen and her sister who gets her power (super strength) bang on cue at her 18th birthday party whilst doting mother Siobhán McSweeney whose power is the ability to control technology, or not as it turns out, keeps the peace between her two daughters. The sisters have different fathers for reasons which come to light as the series progresses.
Extraordinary is a fresh, fast paced, whacky, fun filled, irreverent series. Whether the idea can sustain a second series or beyond will depend on creator and writer Emma Moran’s ability to develop fresh storylines once the novelty has worn off. Let’s hope there’s more: Moran and the superb cast deserve all the success that is sure to come their way.
Oh, and try turning the music down a notch.