1. Can you detect any traces of Cassavetes style or sensibility, as it appears in "A Woman Under the Influence," in this episode? If yes, explain the commonalities you see; if no, explain the differences in tone and treatment.
I think after looking hard enough I could find small commonalities but overall the tone and treatment were completely different! The private eye TV show was pretty typical in set up, interesting, and over quickly.. Very fast passed and over quickly due to the fact it was just an episode versus the long and drawn out film. "A Woman..." does not follow any certain set up, seems to carry on longer than necessary, and is not predictable (in a certain way). The style of film was comparable though... the lighting technique very important and certain angles at fault for certain moods portrayed.
2. The format of a private eye TV show has to follow a formula to some degree -- in his independent films, Cassavetes tried to break away from the idea of formula. Why do you think Cassavetes wanted to break away from formula, and what do you think are some of the pros and cons of working within a formula?
In my own opinion I think there almost has to be a formula for a "private eye" type show, and if not specifically a mystery, a detective, and an interesting plot, suspects, and hopefully a solution at the end! I do not think it has to be in any specific order though, and if there is a way to spice up the events then please do! I think Cassavetes was a different kind of director and actor and mostly wanted to break away from formula because he wanted to be different. He didn't produce works like other directors and stood out for that reason alone.. I think there are definite pros to working within a formula and thats the basic hope of not getting it wrong.. of having interesting points, characters, and plot all may be formulaic but reaching out beyond those goals is when the film really sells. The cons of formula may be too confined for some, and breaking it leads to greatness.. (Sometimes)