Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip

According to NBC, with this programme Aaron Sorkin is doing for television "what he did for the White House", which is what, exactly? Give everyone the impression that everyone there is funnier than they actually are? Make viewers feel they know more about it? Those things might be--and for most of The West Wing's run, were--fine and admirable when you're talking about the U.S. government, and by extension, the country, but they're not so important when it's a telly programme. Of course that wouldn't matter if Aaron Sorkin knew the difference, but there's not a lot of evidence in here that he does.

We're three episodes into Studio 60 now, and here's what I think:
  • Telly isn't as important as government. I know you're shocked to hear me say that. Believe me, I'm shocked to be saying it. Maybe I should clarify by saying that this television programme isn't as important as government. Maybe some are.
  • Matthew Perry and Bradley Whitford are an excellent double act.
  • Amanda Peet should wear either a hair elastic or a hair band, but not both at the same time.
  • I don't care about anyone on this programme who isn't Matthew Perry or Bradley Whitford, and I only care about them because of who they used to be. For god's sake, The West Wing made me care about Rob Lowe inside three episodes. Rob Lowe! I didn't even think he was still alive when the series started.
I hope it gets better. I've a feeling it won't, but I hope it does. Even as it is it's not terrible or anything. It's still a lot better than most other things on telly. Just not as good as I wish it was.


LukeM said...

You're first point is bang on, the problem with Studio 60 is that noone gets to say "That means Kazahkstan could destabilise the entire region" or "That means thousands of Democratic rustbelt workers will lose their jobs" etc etc.

Instead its "That means the next episode of our comedy sketch show might not be that good". Big swinging mickeys.

And Amanda Peet's hair is the least of her worries. Her inability to act is a more pressing issue. Is she Sorkin's girlfriend by any chance? The double act are magnificent, I agree but they need to get some heavyweight acting competition in the mix for this show to work. I'm still watching of course... said...

In the same way that The West Wing made you wish that Aaron Sorkin's characters inhabited the White House, Studio 60 makes you wish TV was really controlled by these people. I know which is more important, but I also know which I watch more of. said...

What I'm trying to say is: I like this show, so there.

FatB said...

The dense snappy dialogue seems easier to believe amongst TV types than most least it's what I imagine 'good looking' Armando Ianucci's might say.

I'll continue to watch, but there aren't enough interesting ancilliary characters ... yet.