Monday, October 30, 2006

It's a Tradeoff

On the same day fans get word that Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip probably ain't gonna make it, I find out that Arrested Development's brilliant creator is coming back to television with a new series. You take the good with the bad, methinks. C'mon!

And here's a late video addition to this post: This here blog and the following offensive party go together like Asians and homework...

Check that shit out. I don't know who those kids are, but I love 'em.


At 4:25 PM, Blogger Derek said...

That Terry Schiavo costume is the hands down winner.

At 4:27 PM, Blogger Ace Cowboy said...

That video won't be up for long, that's guaranteed. Crazy, I've been BEGGING people to use the Schiavo idea -- three times in the past few weeks as a matter of fact -- and this girl might just be the woman of my dreams. Well done.

At 5:10 PM, Blogger Jason Mulgrew said...

What NBC needs right now is a cheap sitcom that revolves around veiled masturbation jokes and pot references, preferably written by a blogger. Yeah, that'll save the network.

And I gotta say, I think the WTC and plane combo is worse than Schiavo. I really can't think of anything more offensive than that that doesn't involve attacking someone's family.

(For example, say your friend Dirk's brother was a soldier killed in Iraq. Then you show up at the party in fatigues and covered in blood and tell everyone that your Dirk's dead solider brother. That would be pretty offensive.)

At 5:11 PM, Blogger Kevin said...

Outstanding. They forgot a few black hooded executioners carrying around a sword and a few heads.

At 5:12 PM, Blogger The Letter D said...


I've been wondering what you think about Studio 60. I like the show, but Sorkin's laying on the "I'm smarter than my audience, let me instruct them on commedia dell'arte, flyover country is nothing but yokels, blah blah blah" is annoying.

When people say that they can see the author writing, I now know what they mean.

Plus I can't figure out if the woman who plays Jeannie is attractive. She's a Seinfeldian two-face.

At 10:12 AM, Blogger neddy said...

a) best Halloween party every? Funny thing is, they could have made the Twin Towers costume even more offensive (little Barbie dolls jumping out of upper floors, etc.) I think if you went as slutty Schiavo jumping from the WTC that'd be the cake.

b) I was enjoying Studio 60, but I could see it going downhill fast. How long they could sustain any level of entertainability is beyond me.

At 10:44 AM, Blogger Ace Cowboy said...

Jeannie is the brunette, D? If so, I'm definitely into her. Not so much with the Harriet chick, but I like the brunette. Harriet's Holly Hunter imitation made me a little horny, but for the most part she sucks.

And that was my biggest problem with the show, that I really didn't like one of the leads. Well, two actually, I thought Wings Guy's character was terrible.

On the whole, I liked it, didn't love it. I will stand up for Sorkin 'til the day I die -- I think he's one of the three best playwrights of his generation. I will follow him to the end of the earth and jump off if he sees fit.

It's tough to judge something so dense on four shows. And it was just starting to get good, get to that point where Sorkin could let go of the reins and just write, without setup. I mean, have you ever watched the first four Seinfelds? Or other successes? It takes a while to find the right tone. And I think Sorkin was a handful of episodes away from being at that point. I wanted a full season, because I liked it enought that I wanted to see it through. Maybe a little less schmaltz was in order, but it was headed in the right direction. The pilot was brilliant, that alone deserved a full season.

The West Wing was awesome, everyone knows that. There were classic episodes where shit happened, like What a Day It Has Been or In the Shadow of Two Gunmen (prez gets shot, then season premiere after), the Manchester two-parter, and 25, the final Sorkin episode and everything that led up to it. And those were obviously awesome.

But the genius of Srokin was in the random episode in the middle of the season in which NOTHING major happens in the plot, but it's still awesome anyway. Like Noel, where Josh has the flashbacks and YoYo Ma plays Bach's G Major. Or Evidence of Things Unseen, when CJ tries to balance an egg on the equinox and the gang tries to play cards. It's THESE episodes that show just how special Sorkin is as a true American playwright. He can take a random week and make it a must-see event.

And I thought the recent Studio 60s were the first steps in that direction, like in Harriet's monologue about church and Danny's telling the kid to go with NBS because of Jordan's new vision. It's clicking now, the characters are all falling into place, and it's just starting. Give this show another 10 episodes and it'll be the greatest thing on TV.

But this show was flawed from the start, because the idea wasn't as compelling as The West Wing. When it comes down to it, does anyone really care about a behind-the-scenes MadTV? Probably not.


At 12:06 PM, Blogger The Letter D said...

Is the show dead? I tuned in last night, but they were showing Friday Night Lights.

I agree that the Studio 60 hasn't hit its stride yet. But my issue isn't with the set up but with the preachiness.

I probably agree with most of Sorkin's political viewpoints, but they're laid on so thick and condescendingly, that I can't get drawn into the show. Like you, I like it, but don't love it.

I'll be disappointed if it doesn't make it. I'm still in mourning for Sports Night. I guess if there's no audience for behind the scenes of SportsCenter there's none for SNL.

At 12:16 PM, Blogger Ace Cowboy said...

D, I hear ya on the preachiness...but again, watch the old WWs, there's a lot of preachiness early in that show too. It takes Sorkin a bit to fall into place and not just scold people through his writing.

It's not dead yet, but close.

At 7:37 PM, Blogger MDS said...

I honestly don't mind the preaching. Where I do have problems with Sorkin is that sometimes he writes some really great dialog but doesn't have anywhere to go with it. I'm thinking especially of Malice and A Few Good Men when I say that, so maybe I'm past the statute of limitations. Who are your other two great playwrights of his generation? Do you consider Mamet and Sorkin to be part of the same generation?

At 8:20 PM, Blogger John Howard said...

Studio 60 Was Better When It First Came Out


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