If you haven't heard the news yet, the late and great female-led baseball series, Pitch, has dropped on Hulu, and we at TV Fanatic are excited about it.
PItch was one of the greatest new series to come out of 2016. It was a critical darling, and it racked up an excited, devout fanbase that only grew as the series progresses.
It had a stellar cast led by an incredible Kylie Bunbury in some of her best work of her career and Mark-Paul Gosselaar, and they without a question of doubt had some of the best, most-talked-about chemistry that made them one of the most noteworthy dynamic duos onscreen.
Sadly, the series struck out on FOX, and even with a passionate and vocal fanbase that campaign and fought lie hell to get the series picked up again, it didn't happen. But here's the thing, the devoted fans of this great series never went away, and years later, there were still rumblings about picking this series back up.
Dan Fogelman even came close to signing a deal for it. At this rate, it shouldn't be a matter of IF this series will be revisited again but WHEN someone will bite the bullet and give the people what they want! Nearly everyone is still devoted to it.
But in a positive sign, Hulu just dropped the entire first season on it's streaming network, and now fans of old can rewatch this beloved series, and new people can finally see what all the hype is about.
Here's why Pitch Needs to be your next Quarantine Binge.
Kylie Bunbury is a Force of Nature
It's impossible to watch this series and not fall utterly in love with Kylie Bunbury and her performance.
She put her whole heart into this series. It's not an exaggeration to say Ginny Baker is one of the greatest female characters of the 21st century.
Bunbury got toned and fit for this role, learning the craft of pitching and exceeding at it. Her hard work shines through every single installment. She will make you laugh, cry, and root her on the entire time.
She put forth such an emotional, multifaceted, heartwarming performance as this young talent whose world is turned upside down when she becomes the first female to join the professional league.
MPG's Mike Lawson is Delightfully Unexpected
Gosselaar is almost unrecognizable as Mike Lawson, not that he isn't fantastic any way you get him, but he embodies the role of the buff, bearded iconic catcher, and he loses himself in this role so effortlessly that you simply forget that he's the same person from Saved By the Bell or Franklin & Bash.
It's a different role for him, and he kills it. I promise you, he's one of the things you'll be talking about most when you binge this series.
Mike Lawson starts off a bit gruff and rough around the edges, but then the more layers peeled back on this character, the more you'll fall in love with him. He perfectly captures the aging veteran athlete fighting against time and trying to maintain or reshape his legacy.
And on a shallow note, gird your loins because MPG, who has always been a snack, is a full-course meal with a beard, proving that beards do make everything 1000% times better. Just saying.
It Appeals to Sports Fans and Non-Sports Fans Alike:
In the same vein of a Friday Night Lights, you don't have to actually enjoy the sport to get into this series. It's more than just a sports drama.
It's also a compelling family and friendship drama that is about Ginny in more than one facet of her life.
Her story is as compelling off the field as it is is on, and there are so many elements to this show that will be must-watch viewing for the entire family. Everyone will get something out of it.
Ginny's familial life is complicated, and it's often something she has to manage while making a name for herself on the team, and that's where her teammates and friendship come in. Ginny's complicated relationship with her father is fascinating in and of itself.
It's Visually On Point and Authentic to the Game
The series had the backing and approval by the MLB, and it shows.
The show films in Petco Park and Dodger Stadium. The series uses the same camera angles that FOX used for actual MLB games. Retired Baseball players came in to coach the fictional players.
From the uniforms to the depiction of players, the series put in a lot of effort with the stamp of approval from the MLB to be as authentic to the game and sport as possible, and it shows.
You'll even see sportscasters and real baseball players onscreen as well.
The Show Realistically Addresses Ginny's Uphill Battle as a Woman Breaking Into the Sport
They don't pull any punches on this issue. Ginny isn't welcomed with open arms when she's drafted to the team. There is a lot of tension, and she's not spared from the sexism and intense scrutiny. She's not handled with kid gloves and coddled, and there's always a sense that her position isn't set in stone.
She's always working to make sure she isn't tossed aside. They showcase how everything, good and bad, falls on her shoulders, and the pressure that she's under for representing both a woman and specifically a black woman breaking into this industry is carefully considered and shown.
The series addresses the Jackie Robinson comparisons and Mamie Johnson and Toni Stone.
Criticism of Ginny is brought right to the surface as they acknowledge how a trick pitch is how she's able to break these grounds in the first place.
The Show Subverts the "Strong Black Woman" Trope
It's a common enough trope to have its own name, sadly, but Ginny Baker could easily be portrayed as an almost robotic, cold, invincible woman who has to carry the weight of the world on her shoulders with no real support or space to feel, and fortunately, the series avoids that completely.
Ginny is allowed to be a multifaceted character. The show makes a point to cover mental and emotional health in a brilliant way midseason.
She's not unfeeling, and cold, and she's allowed to be feminine and flirty while also strong-willed, badass, and passionate.
And the people around her genuinely care about her and know how to look after and take care of her when it's called for it. Ginny has agency, and she's allowed to be more than one thing. It's as refreshing as it is compelling and necessary.
It Has Rich, Compelling Characters and A Strong Cast
Pitch has one of the best casts. Bunbury and Gosselaar are the leads, but the talent doesn't end there. Sarah Shahi, BJ Britt, and Josh Peck are among the show's guest stars.
The Rookie's Ali Larter kills it as Ginny's manager and an almost maternal figure. The two women have a rich and messy relationship that has its ups and downs, but the love between them is not up for debate.
Riverdale's Mark Consuelos plays the rough around the edges, hardass Oscar who can be both ally and foe. The legendary Dan Lauria plays the lovable, coach whose heart softens to Ginny.
Mo McRae plays Ginny's close friend and teammate Blip Sanders, and Meagan Holder plays his wife, Ginny's sister-friend. Each of these characters is wonderfully developed, and they bring so much heart to the series.
It's Organically Diverse
As much as we wish it weren't the case, it is something that you have to take note of, and there is such thing as "forced diversity" too. But Pitch isn't trying to tick off boxes for the sake of it.
The series isn't just female-led, but it has many female characters, and they have their own relationships that actually pass the Bechdel test.
It's racially diverse as well, and different ages too, but there's also room for diverse opinions, beliefs, and experiences that are given weight and space, it doesn't just stop at the physical diversity.
In addition to the adrenaline-inducing sports scenes that will have you leaning into the screen and maybe missing that feeling of watching all of your beloved sports that have been put on hold thanks to COVID, and all that delicious drama and conflict, and some tears, the show is pretty damn funny.
The entire cast has insane chemistry, and there's ample space for humor and fun. They'll have you in stitches at least once every single episode.
It Has the Best Platonic Friendship
Ginny being "one of the guys" means she has an array of different relationships that spring up, and it's nice to see them develop over the series. She and Duarte have one of the most endearing bonds on the back-half of the season, and it never once ventures towards romance. She also develops a kinship with Tommy too.
But the most prominent example of this is Ginny's relationship with Blip Sanders.
They are so close, they almost remind you of siblings. Their friendship was one of the highlights of the series, and when Ginny was headed into uncertainty and potentially hostile territory, at least she always had Blip.
Ginny and Mike's Relationship AKA "Bawson"
Every show will play around with some romance, even if it's subtext. The beauty of Ginny Baker and Mike Lawson's relationship is that it's mostly left up to interpretation. Some people "shipped" the two and others didn't, but everyone could agree that Bawson was the best element of the series.
Bunbury and Gosselaar had lightning in a bottle chemistry, so all of their scenes stood out the most. They worked so well together, that the relationship between Baker and Lawson was a show-stealer. Whether you interpreted it as teammates, coworkers, best friends, mentor/mentee, or something else entirely, Bawson delivered.
It's a credit to both actors that the series could nail such a unique, special bond in such a short period of time that commanded attention and resonated in so many ways.
Their journey from reluctant, begrudging teammates to best friends was some of the most compelling writing of the series. They juggled banter and bickering and heartfelt, profound talks, and they were always able to overcome some of everything.
I assure you, it's hard to watch this series and not fall in love with their dynamic.
It's an Easy and Quick Binge
If you have a short attention span, or you just don't want to devote yourself to another multi-season series, then Pitch is the perfect binge. It only has ten episodes.
You can knock out the whole season in a day if you want, and with a shortened season, there was little room for the series to screw anything up. Those hours will fly by, but that moment of escapism will be well worth it.
It Has a Passionate, Devote Fanbase STILL
It's been four years since the series came out on FOX, and it still has a legion of fans who will happily chatter on about the series.
Not a day goes by where the series isn't brought up in some capacity or another. The fanbase is still active and passionate as ever, so you'll no doubt have many people to discuss this series with while you binge.
There's Still Hope for a Revival
The series has been dead for four years, but there is always hope for it getting picked back up again. We've had so many close calls, but maybe with the beloved series finding a new fanbase and larger audience after getting more exposure on HULU, all the talk of a revival will become a reality.
Pitch fans aren't done yet, and we're just waiting for someone to put her back in the game!
Over to you, Pitch Fanatics, old and new. Do you plan on rewatching this series? Did you watch it the first time around?
Are you new to the series? What are your thoughts? Do you hope that someone will revive it?
Jasmine Blu is a senior staff writer for TV Fanatic. Follow her on Twitter.