Creator Amy Sherman-Palladino and her husband/collaborator Daniel Palladino have seemingly tried hard to address complaints that their Emmy-winning Amazon comedy has been too boring, too privileged, too white, etc. "But there’s a bigger problem at the center of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, which for some of us isn’t a problem at all: It’s a low-stakes show," says Hank Stuever. "We’re so used to talking about, analyzing and praising high-stakes shows that we forget that most of what’s on TV qualifies as low-stakes. Network comedies are almost always low-stakes shows, as are crime procedurals and most dramas. Characters have ups and they have downs, but the fluctuations tend to be short and resolvable. It’s the television most of us grew up watching. Why, then, can’t The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel merely exist as a prestige iteration of the low-stakes show, featuring a character who is resplendent in her surroundings, quick with the cute quips and striving while not exactly suffering? Why can’t her panicky antics simply serve the show’s zany momentum, without unleashing existential crises or darker themes? In fact, isn’t the show honoring its period setting by keeping it light? That’s how America so capably managed to sweep most of its social injustices under the rug for so long — by keeping it light. I look at the manic sunniness of Mrs. Maisel as a subversive form of accuracy. Midge (played with thoroughly consistent pep, verve and vim by Rachel Brosnahan) is a low-stakes heroine in a low-stakes show with a set of low-stakes problems: Will she become a famous comedienne? (Maybe! Probably! Who cares?)"
When will The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel reckon with its heroine's flaws?: "One of Midge’s biggest faults is her inability to recognize her snobbishness and social myopia, a condition that, in theory, should have been mitigated by life on the road and being exposed to all kinds of people while on tour with singer Shy Baldwin," says Jen Chaney. "But it isn’t. On one hand, this is really disappointing and makes it more challenging to embrace the notion that Midge is the sort of anti–Phyllis Schlafly renegade she’s portrayed as in episode seven. On the other hand, it’s hard to imagine a Marvelous Mrs. Maisel that unfolds without aesthetically luxuriating in some of the trappings of wealth. Midge becoming more 'woke,' for lack of a better word, stands at odds with the show’s sensibility."
Mrs. Maisel is actually a big visual effects show: "We don’t have dragons, but there’s a lot of sh*t to erase," says Amy Sherman-Palladino. "We have a great crew and great special effects people, and they create some amazing things that are spectacularly sensational. They look completely real. We’re very lucky." Her husband and collaborator Daniel Palladino adds: "The big dance things were just captured on camera, but there’s things like, in the distance, we often have to change. Buildings were not built yet, and cars and all that stuff. Certainly anyone walking down the street. It’s actually a big visual effects show, just because we’re outside. Mad Men was self-contained, and probably didn’t have to do a lot of special effects, because so much of it was internal. And we’re not so internal. We keep our people busy."