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Central Park 1.4
Photo: Apple TV+

Television

‘Central Park’ musical report card: Episode 4

Garbage starts to pile up in Central Park and we’re treated to the songwriting talents of Cyndi Lauper

Central Park faces another threat this week. This time, Bitsy and the mayor conspire to sabotage the daily clean up effort causing trash to accumulate. While Owen searches for a solution, the excess garbage makes Paige paranoid that rats have made their way into the home. Elsewhere, Molly frets over blowing her chance with Kite Boy, since she almost killed him with a kiss.  

Cyndi Lauper, is the second pop star to lend her skills to the show after Sara Barielles pitched in on “Skater’s Circle”. This episode the icon writes a pair of songs and she knocks it out of the park. Which numbers made the grade this week? Find out below. They were all actually pretty good.

“Garbage Ballet”

“Garbage Ballet” written by Cyndi Lauper and William Wittman – A+

There’s something about the pop stars who write songs for the show but they always seem to have the best pieces. The song is catchy and sanitations has never been so serious, elegant and clumsy all at the same time. You can’t help but admire the choreography with synchronized movements to pick up trash and all the non-dancer bodies going through the five ballet positions and striking dramatic poses. It works musically and comedically.

“Rats” written by Cyndi Lauper and Teddy Sinclair – A

The intro to “Rats” fits right in with Lauper’s 80’s catalog of songs complete with a synthesizer and echo guitar effects. We have a pleasant duet between Paige and Cole while the former searches for rodents to kill and the latter tries to foil the attempts. There’s a good quick back and forth banter between the two and some funny rhymes about rat feces.

“I’m the Worst” written by Brent Knopf – B

The tone matches Molly’s teenage angst as she deals with her crush, Brendan, ghosting her after their allergy inducing kiss. The number is a nice change of pace using the comic art animation and her heroic ego, Fista Puffs. It even receives bonus points for all the superhero references. The song displays Kristen Bell’s range as she hits higher and higher notes during the buildup but it’s all a tease when she’s interrupted by her lab partner, Hazel, and comes back to reality. The song gets knocked down a bit for being so short and incomplete. On another note, can’t wait for Ester Dean to sing on the show now that they’ve introduced her as Hazel.

“Manager to Manager” written by Brent Knopf, Steven Davis, and Kelvin Yu – A-

The song begins as a rapping duet between the sanitations manager and Owen after he learns that they haven’t reached maximum garbage capacity. The accompanying rock guitar helps encapsulate Owen’s frustration and anger towards the situation. There’s a softer interlude in the middle that serves as a break to the rising testosterone and allows the two managers to regroup and find a resolution. The scenes are framed well and the split screen accentuates the interplay between the two. The mood lighting with different shades and colors add a nice artistic touch.

“Rats Calypso Reprise” produced by Brent Knopf, written by Cyndi Lauper and Teddy Sinclair – A

They hit ‘em with the remix during the closing credits with this calypso version of “Rats”. It has a little bit more flavor than the original with a violin pizzicato carrying the melody. The song is a special something to take the viewers away at the end.

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