All Along The Watchtower

films . videos . television

Monday, October 23, 2006

Does Studio 60 Suck? Of Course It Does!

I'm done with this show. Aaron Sorkin churns out dialogue on a weekly basis that would make the writers of the later seasons of M*A*S*H* choke.

USA Today's Robert Bianco has a critique of what needs to be done to fix the show. All seven of his bullet statements are certainly on-target. Let me add one more bullet-- to the back of the head. This show should be cancelled, and soon. Whatever they do, they'll do it with one less viewer.

How does this show continually fail to do anything but capture the mediocre self-importance that is the Sorkinomatic Script Generator's continually hammering the themes of how a mediocre self-important television program is the most important cultural institution of the last fifty years? Let me count the ways.

Spoilers follow:

Nate Corrdry's parents come to visit.
Are they cardboard stereotypes of Middle Americans? Of course they are!
Have they heard Abbott & Costello's "Who's On First?" routine? Of course they haven't!
Everyone knows the Fly Over States are culturally illiterate.

DL Hughley realizes he's the token Garrett Morris.
Does he decide that hiring an up and coming black comedian as a writer will elevate the material he performs? Of course he does!
Is this comedian he and Chandler go to check out a cliched hack with material that plumbs the depths of "You ever notice that white people...?" Of course he is!
Do they find the answer to their prayers in a black comedian that is bombing terribly with original material? Of course they do!
Does it remind the viewer of how they took a black kid from out of nowhere to make him President Sheen's little buddy? Of course it does!

Harriet Notalent's baseball playing boyfriend shows up to the party.
Is he a jerk despite his high profile gig and physical attractiveness? Of course he is!
Does he hit on Amanda Peet? Who wouldn't? I mean, of course he did!

Eli Wallach shows up quite literally out of nowhere spouting Alzheimerian gibberish. Is he rescued from security by the dude from thirtysomething? Of course he is!
Do his random words make sense to one of the super-literate geniuses that populate the Sorkanian universe? Of course they do!
Have I used both Alzheimerian and Sorkanian in the same paragraph? Of course I did!
Did he turn out to have landed at Omaha Beach? Of course he did!
Did we get a little history lesson? Of course we did!
Did he also wind up being named as a Communist during the Blacklist? Of course he did!

Is this form of a review annoying? Of course it is!

Well, sit through an hour of it and you have a pretty good idea of what watching Studio 60 is like.

5 Comments:

At 9:34 AM, Blogger Kat Coble said...

I haven't watched last night's episode, and I don't know when I'll get around to it.

I really want to like the show, but it seems to be more and more about how wonderful Aaron Sorkin thinks Aaron Sorkin is, and how much he thinks America is suffering without his talent.

 
At 10:31 AM, Blogger Sarcastro said...

Bingo!

The whole show reminds me of a ninth grade kid who won't shut up about his score on the MENSA test. "Look how smart I am! Look how smart I am!"

I wanted to like the show, but can't. Sorkin continually bashing the audience over the head with his smug-hammer gets old quick. "Look how smart I am! Look how smart I am!"

BOM picked up one of the things that struck me, mainly the recycling of plots and story ideas from Sports Night and WW.

"Look how unoriginal I am! I plagariaze my own stuff. Just like Gene Roddenberry. Even if I get cancelled, I can claim that my show is 'too smart' for network TV! I can't lose!"

 
At 3:52 PM, Blogger Sean Braisted said...

Didn't they pull the same sort of crap on West Wing? They would have this stupid setup where one person would have to explain an issue to another person.

West Wing was too preachy for me, and I'm a Liberal who loves politics. I don't really care about the long history of comedy, or the comic genious of Abbot and Costello. So this show really doesn't offer much to me in the way of entertainment. If I wanted to know the history of comedy, I'd watch a documentary...it'd probably be funnier.

 
At 4:53 PM, Anonymous nm said...

By my estimate, they've had one and a half good shows. Out of what, six weeks? I loved last week, but this week was as bad as could be. Nothing happened that was not completely predictable. I'm trying to figure out how long I give it before I stop watching.

 
At 8:19 PM, Blogger Kat Coble said...

Okay. I finally made it thru last nite's episode.

I would rather have gone to the dentist.

When, o when will writers stop thinking that the Blacklist was this hugely dramatic event equal to the Holocaust?

That entire episode was one long love letter written to Aaron Sorkin by Aaron Sorkin. And the way he's structured it, if you don't join in the Sorkin-love, you're just a rube from flyover country who doesn't get the special genius that is Sorkin.

 

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