Skip to comments.The West Wing: Only A Hollywood Fantasy
Posted on 01/26/2006 1:54:06 AM PST by Aussie Dasher
The West Wing is about to be demolished. No, not the edifice that is home to White House senior staff, but the television series that has aired on NBC since 1999. This week, NBC announced that the last episode will air on May 14. Like many viewers, I tuned out long ago. When Bill Clinton was still in office, there was something mildly amusing about the Hollywood fantasy version of what a White House should be. Josiah Bartlet was everything Bill Clinton wasn't: a devoted husband, a man who got down on his knees in the Oval Office only to pray, a leader who'd rather lose an important vote than compromise his principles. But the series became tedious, the liberal proselytizing more aggressive, and the premise ridiculous once George W. Bush assumed office. The series has been on life support for several seasons, with every effort to revive the excitement first generated seven years ago failing. Not even the prospect of heartthrob Jimmy Smits (Congressman Matt Santos) becoming president has been enough to woo back an audience.
With "West Wing" gone, Hollywood fantasies of wresting control of the White House from evil Republicans will have to rely on the staying power of ABC's "Commander In Chief." But Geena Davis as President Mom is a pretty thin reed. Although the show premiered to record ratings in September, it's been losing ground almost steadily since. Conservatives have criticized President Mackenzie Allen as a fictional stalking horse for Hillary Rodham Clinton, but Davis' President Allen may actually set back the chances of a woman becoming commander in chief any time soon. Do we really want our president grappling with teenage angst and sibling rivalry in the middle of the War on Terror? The show's creators seem not to realize that most women have long ago given up trying to have it all. Sure, working moms are now the norm, but the evidence suggests that most women who make it to the very top of their professions do so either after they have raised their children or chosen to remain childless. It's hard to balance work and family, even harder to balance becoming the boss in the workplace while maintaining the role of involved mom at home, and nigh impossible to manage a nuclear crisis while supervising the kids' homework.
But Hollywood keeps trying to remake the world in its own image, even if it doesn't sell to the viewing audience. And it's not just political shows that fall flat. NBC's new series "The Book of Daniel" has not only flopped in the ratings battle, it has scared off viewers and sponsors with its in-your-face iconoclasm. The main character, the Rev. Daniel Webster, played by Aidan Quinn, is a pill-popping Episcopal priest with a gay son, a drug-dealing daughter and an alcoholic wife. Jesus -- more of the Jesus Christ Superstar variety than a biblical interpretation -- makes regular appearances on the show to dispense Dr. Phil-type advice, but He, too, seems aimed more at irritating than attracting believers to the show. At a press conference with NBC Entertainment President Kevin Reilly this week, one TV critic noted that a recent episode ran virtually without ads: "Your commercial breaks were a festival of NBC promos; I think you had maybe one national ad in the whole show. Can you afford to keep putting that show on, or have these pressure groups . . . driven off literally all the advertisers?" A better question might be whether network executives are willing to air shows that drive viewers away if it suits their political agenda.
Hollywood used to try to entertain Americans, now it tries to indoctrinate them. And it has had some success. Shows like "Will & Grace" have made homosexuality appear non-threatening, indeed endearing, for example, advancing as well as reflecting greater tolerance toward gays. But the last four federal elections suggest Hollywood has yet to convince a majority of voters that Republicans are all simple-minded, greedy autocrats. They keep trying anyway, failing to advance their politics at the polls and losing viewers all the while. Maybe one day, they'll get back to trying to win audiences, not elections.
What is "NBC" and "TV"?
I get a real kick out of the Commander in Chief promo commercials this week. One clip shows Gina Davis saying something to the effect, "Give him five minutes and take your best shot."
This is a liberal mind you. Any sane person would rewrite this for Gina along these lines, "Give him all the time he wants, and if he needs anything let me know."
The left truly does live in some alternatue universe fantasy land. Not only do they not have a clue what conservatism is all about, they simply refuse to own up to what they are all about.
The West Wing. Also known as, Where Liberal Talking Points Go To Die.
And die they did!
It was never the same after Peggy Noonan left. I used to enjoy it before then.
West Wing and Command in Chief are like two stars circling each other as the slip together over the event horizon and into black hole.
Down into the crushing depths of bad story line, bad character development, phoney melodramatic conflict and infinitely-heavy ideological preaching they go.
First one will disappear, then the other. Finally, they will emit no light, no sound, no record that they ever existed.
Beautifully put, I might say!
One is a much easier sell than the other.
I agree with this article, but I have to say a word in favor of "Will and Grace".
We can be against laws legalizing gay marriage (which I am), and against promoting a gay agenda in schools (which I am), and against giving gays special "minority protection" as if they were a race or religion (which I am), and still recognize that gays do exist, and will always exist and that they are a part of our society.
"Will and Grace" might have an agenda to make gays acceptable or "endearing", but I believe (from the ten times I've seen the show) that the agenda is subservient to the story.
The show has good stories, believable and original characters and is funny. It's a comedy first, an agenda second. And it is set in NYC (isn't it?). I mean really, amusing tales about gays in NY, there's nothing phoney about that. Life does, after all, happen.
Anyway, my point is that I would definitely not put "Will and Grace" in the same category as the two "presidential dramas" which so miss the point of what politics and the presidency is all about that they might have been written for some race of methane-breathers on Neptune.
despite the grammar flubs in the first sentence?
..they are just super slick at presenting it in an almost innocuous & certainly comedic manner....(that's the most dangerous kind, cause you don't see it coming!)
...their propaganda just slides right into the psyche ...
I've caught a few epidsodes in reruns...
...slick, polished, beautiful people, all the funny lines you can want...
..but nothing of what happens to those beautiful bodies after multiple sex partners...his and hers...
...of sexually transmitted diseases....
..of indoctrination to young boys and girls who wonder if it's fun to experiment...
Propaganda in its highest form.....The Third Reich would have been proud.
Absent your dissent on "Will and Grace" you just described the article and Linda Chavez's point. They, Hollywood, get so lost in their propaganda that the story suffers and they lose their audience.
The Stone Age Media is the only industry in America that believes it can insult 60% of their customers.
Pray for W and Our Freedom Fighters
I don't know. I think you're going a bit overboard there. There's a different standard for school-curriculum and for TV sitcoms. Although it undoubtedly has an ideological slant, from what I've seen, it rises to the level of art. Maybe not high art, but art nonetheless. In my opinion.
..but keep in mind it's not just schools who propagandize....
..it's coming from all quarters and our kids are in the cross-hairs.
Our kids mindlessly sit in front of the tube...it's their pablum, their pacifier, their babysitter...
..propaganda, you bet!--It's not just from schools anymore.
Alternate title - "Grace and the Happy Homos".
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.