Top 10 Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist Songs

7/07/2020


Given our current quarantine situation, I've been finding myself watching Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist on a loop. If Jane Levy's face isn't taking up my screen, then I'm usually found listening to the many wonderful covers from the show on Spotify. I adore this soundtrack. Are the covers better than the originals? No - well, I could make a case for Happier but let's get to that later - yet each cover sung by the actors fills your heart. If you haven't been keeping up to date with me online and Youtube didn't bombard you with the first episode of this wonderful original series masked as an ad, then you're life is Zoeyless and I'm sorry. This NBC show is about a tech girl named Zoey, who suddenly gets the ability to hear/view people's inner emotions in the way of songs. They perform their desires, happiness, sadness, or confessions by covering songs by the likes of The Beatles, Whitney Huston, No Doubt, P!nk, and so on.. If you want to watch a show that makes you feel unfairly untalented, this is it. Basically. It stars Jane Levy as our main star, followed by Skylar Austin and Alex Newell as her friends, Peter Gallagher and Mary Steenburgen as Zoey's parents, and Lauren Graham (Lorelai FREAKING Gilmore!) stars so brightly as Zoey's girlboss Joan that she can't not be one of the best things about the show. The cast is diverse, wonderfully talented, and as a group make up a great mix of known actors and people beginning to blossom in their work (such as John Clarence Stewart, Michael Thomas Grant, Kapil Talwalkar, and Stephanie Styles). But what are my most played 10 songs from the entire season? Let's find out together.


10) Got The Music In Me
sung by Jane Levy
The opening song of episode 2 'Zoey's Extraordinary Boss' was our first taste of Jane Levy's singing ability, and dayum, she rocked it. Since seeing this episode this song may or may not of been played repeatedly by me each day to help elevate my mood in these crappy times. The beat, the lyrics, the cheesiness... absolutely perfect. This has also been the only scene thus far to have all of the characters together (spoiler: it's a dream sequence, but.. it counts. Right?)



9) Wrecking Ball
sung by Lauren Graham 
Lauren Graham's character Joan had great growth throughout the show, despite the lack of screen time (I need more Gilmore Joan in my life!). Wrecking Ball was by far her standout solo, despite how little we saw of it on the show. Not only was this when she was vocally strongest (not counting American Pie), but it brought a whole new meaning to the pop classic.



8) I Wanna Dance With Somebody
sung by Stephanie Styles
Autumn was an underdog of a character throughout the first season of this show. I adored both her character and her voice, boy, her voice. This was our first song by her and it is honestly perfection. 'I Wanna Dance With Somebody" is one of the first performances I think of when reminiscing about this series. It conveyed such a sense of loneliness. The vocals, dancing, and Mo's backtrack of utter disbelief makes for the 8th spot on this list. 


7) Perfect
sung by Mary Steenburgen and Peter Gallagher
Mitch and Maggie's last performance together of the season. Who didn't shed a tear? Ed Sheeran's song is the most perfect fit for this dance scene. It was very reminiscent of their earlier relationship. The lyrics were a perfect example of how when in tremendous love the other can change to such an extent but it won't shatter our love for them. I'm unashamed to admit that I cried for a solid 15 minutes. I also think that was Mary Steenburgen's strongest vocal performance. 



6) I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles)
sung by Max (Skylar Austin)
Prior to this gem of a song, Skyler Austin's character Max had sung a few suggestive songs to Zoey, but I'd argue that this was the first true love song. I Think I Love You and Sucker were flirty, but this showed just how true Max's feelings are. (am I taking this show quite seriously? yes.) If the Pitch Perfect trilogy taught us anything it's that Skylar Austin sings absolutely everything perfectly.



5) Mad World
sung by John Clarence Stewart
I adore the original of this song so it's no real surprise that this cover showed up on this list. However, for a song from the very first episode of the show, it stuck with me. I feel like this was a glimpse into what the show wanted to be. It broke my heart and I hadn't yet felt so seen in a TV show - let alone a pilot. 



4) How Do I Live
sung by Jane Levy
Episode 8 'Zoey's Extraordinary Glitch' broke my heart into a billion pieces. Jane Levy's overall performance was one of the best I've seen of any actor in a single episode. She portrayed humor, heartbreak, love, and lust all while keeping Zoey's authentic characteristics. The sound of silence in this episode was played beautifully, which you'll know what I mean if you have seen it. The last song of the episode 'How Do I Live' sung by, of course, Jane Levy seemed to come out of nowhere. Having not been entirely familiar with Levy's range, this was such an impact scene and the song was the perfect choice. She sung the entirety of the song with the emotions that flickered across her expression, a no easy feat, and made me sob into my drink.



3) The Great Pretender
sung by Alex Newell 
Mo is quite obviously a tremendous singer, but this was the highlight of his vocal ability to me. It portrayed such an intense sadness that not many actors could even hope to do. The song for the episode was a perfect choice. I think what I love most about it is that it's one of the only songs of the season that's a character singing to themselves. It's beautiful. Mo is beautiful. We all need him as a friend. 


2) Miss American Pie
by the entire cast
This was the final song of the show and boy, did it put the audience through the ringer. Upon first glance, this song seems out of place for such a sad scene but after a look at the lyrics, it really is a devastating song. That last line broke me into a billion pieces and I'm wrecked forever.



1) Happier
sung by John Clarence Stewart and India de Beaufort
This may be a bit of an obscure winner but I stand by it. This song was the most perfect fit of all songs chosen for the first season. It was such an intimate look at what we all assume to be Simon and Jessica's relationship. The dance scene was beautiful, the singing was lovely, and the lyrics broke my heart. This song is 100% going to be at the top of my 'songs of 2020' list on Spotify. 



Since writing this, the show has officially been renewed for a second season. So if you hear a constant high pitch scream, it's me. Have you watched this show? Are you interested in it? Let me know! I need some fellow viewers in my life. Screw Team Edward or Team Jacob, Max and Simon are the new ultimate rivals. 



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