Scott Tobias describes HBO’s The Newsroom as “Aaron Sorkin at his Sorkin-iest,” which, if you have any interest in the show at all, should tell you whether or not you’re going to enjoy it. Walk-and-talkers, tune in, and check out our interview with star Jeff Daniels to find out how hard it is to actually learn how to walk-and-talk.
In premise and execution, Studio 60 was a work of unbearable, overweening arrogance. It began with making the lead character of Matt Albie both a clear Sorkin surrogate and a writer so ridiculously romanticized even M. Night Shyamalan might say, “Get over yourself, dude. You’re a fucking writer, not Jesus’ younger brother, the one God reallylikes.” Albie isn’t just a principled, gifted writer; he’s a man who gets out of bed every morning aching to making a stand. He’s admired by men and irresistible to women who run the gamut from a Maureen Dowd surrogate played by Christine Lahti to the high-end skanks of the Rockettes. Even with a head full of bad chemicals and a belly full of pills, he’s able to single-handedly write a peerless work of transcendent social and political satire everyone in the known universe will be talking about around the water cooler Monday morning. Writing 90 minutes of new comedy every week is a Herculean endeavor for even the most gifted writing staff; now imagine 90 minutes of brilliant comedy emerging anew weekly from the mind of but a single man! On pills, even! And with the kind of problems you would not believe! As I write this, I realize that that this is not a man I’m writing about. This is a God. Oh sure, this man-God has an ego. Wouldn’t you?
Nathan Rabin started his new column, My World Of Flops, partially as an excuse to examine the folly of Aaron Sorkin and the failure of Studio 60 On The Sunset Strip.