Episode Reviews (11)
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A good episode.
The second half wasn't quite as good, or as exciting, as the first half, but it was still an excellent episode. The questions raised, the issued hinted at, in the first part were finally answered, such as just why Tom was speeding while driving through Pahrump. But we all knew that we'd get the answer to that question.
And really, we all knew that Tom would be let go, with no major damage done. At least, I knew that... The one thing that I find interesting is the blow up at the end, when the Macau investor says that Jordon has brought shame on the company, and Jack blows up. Then the daughter has the conversation... and says that she mis-translated. I thought it was obvious that that was a lie. It was obvious to me, at least. Of course the father said exactly what the daughter first translated. There was no mistake; saying that was simply his way of saving face, and being able to continue to do business with NBS. The fact that he put the blame on his daughter... well, that's what dutiful children are for, isn't it? So I was surprised to see a blurb in the episode guide explaining that there'd been no mistake... like I said, I knew that, and I don't speak Chinese at all.
The end of the story has the same strengths and weaknesses as the beginning
Much like the first half of the story, this episode is a mixture of the positive and negative aspects of the series. The character development is definitely good material, and while the absurdity was dialed back a little bit to allow for a relatively simple resolution to Tom’s situation, there were still plenty of moments dedicated to classic misunderstandings and perfect comic timing. The lingering drawback was, as usual, the heavy-handed treatment of the “gay marriage” issue.
I like the fact that Tom was trying to cover for his brother, especially after learning how complicated his family situation has been in earlier episodes. As I mentioned in the review for the previous episode, this gives Tom a self-sacrificing personality that marks him as somewhat unique. I look forward to more exploration of this character and his complicated psychology.
I’m sure that some of the conflict between Jack and Danny hinges on the nuances of network television, but there’s enough context to make each confrontation worth the time. In fact, Jack and Danny have one of the most interesting relationships on the show, and it helps to keep Jordan’s high-wire act from being completely inexplicable. The situation certainly seems primed for Danny and Jordan to work together more and more, which is something to look forward to for many fans.
Matt may not be the management type, but when push comes to shove, he gets the job done. It gives him a bit more depth than the simplistic “Sorkin stand-in” role that he was initially given. Unfortunately, for all his good moments in this episode, he’s stuck in the middle of another endless dialogue about gay rights and Harriet’s comment, which is repeated often and with a lot of emphasis.
The problem isn’t that the show tackles complicated issues. As I’ve said before, any good sketch comedy show should be taking on the sacred cows and controversies of the general public. When the conversations feel natural, in character, and in context, then it works. In this case, however, a lot of Matt’s dialogue sounded like the writer preaching to the audience. There is a middle ground, and in episodes like “The Long Lead Story”, the writers managed to strike that balance.
This was a good episode, and by the end, I was still looking forward to the idea of more episodes. I still think the series is trying to find its voice, however, and the past two episodes are a good example of that. From what I understand, the focus will be shifting more towards character, and if that means more depth for the cast, I can’t complain. I only hope the preaching can be retooled into something a little more subtle.
(As a sidenote: I also have a new podcast associated with my various reviews called “Velocity TV”. Current episodes cover “Studio 60”, so it might be something of interest. Go to http://velocitytv.libsyn.com if you want to listen!)moreless
Stuck in the middle of You.
I saw Part two and just as good as the firestpart. Recap:The people of Studio 60, must gotr to navada to rescue tom from a judge played by John Goodman, while back in Los angeles Matt and harriet are arguing over religion. I believe that the chemistry between matt and Harriet is getting better by each episode and I hope it will improve the series. I storyline about the tom and his problems in a Navada town is very good as well. I think that NBC has two hits in the Monday 9 and 10 p.m time slot. "Heroes" and "Studio 60." Two of the finest hours on network television.moreless
All I have to say is John Goodman.
John Goodman was absolutely great in both episodes but the second one was the best. It was nice to see a "positive" storyline of the war. It was nice to see Tom Jeter breaking the law to go see his brother before he left. This episode really showed the basic "character" and morals of almost everyone of the cast. Harry is really a homophobe- sad; Simon is a drug user but won't let his friends take the fall for him; Tom is a great guy all around; Matt is totally lost without Danny; Danny is really the glue that holds the "show" together; and Jack really is a good guy but has to be the boss.moreless
Part II, Can the characters get released from custody and get back in time for the show?
This show is soooo good, and it just keeps getting better. I so appreciate the smart, sassy dialogue. There are many things to keep an eye out far. Things going on in the background of the main dialogue. Notice the saying over the countdown clock in Matt’s office - “Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like bananas”. Later as the characters dialog, written on the wall, “Reading will make you rich”. There is always depth to the dialogue and the show doesn’t stop there, even the set is a prop. Watch every week and feel appreciated by the writers.moreless
Great guest turn, Sorkin admits his shortcomings and a classic Jack moment make a terrific ep
I've been harping on how the show does a poor job showing how people outside Hollywood are so I was overjoyed when Goodman makes that exact point: "Stop assuming everyone between 5th Avenue and the Hollywood Bowl is a barefoot hick!" I've been saying that for weeks! It's about time Sorkin recognized his problems and tries to fix them.
There are still some problems. The stuff on gay rights was rather preachy although the twist of Harriet being uninvited to teh Christian thing because she tried to sound tolerant was a nice touch. I also liked matt's comment that "it's not like all of Hollywood meets every week to decide what to think!" And the bit of why Tom was speeding was a tad over the top.
It was fun seeing Matt try to run the show, handling that female writer and the way he played the fill-in anchor was good. Of course, that had the pay off of Danny managing to have it all under control within seconds of his return, showing why he's the boss.
We get more of the growing arc of Jordan's days perhaps numbered because she won't play ball. This leads to golden moments for Jack, once again trying to make people see that TV is a business and quality doesn't always equal money. His constant arguments with Danny build to that awesome moment where he goes off on the foreign businessman, defending Jordan and the network. That his daughter simply mistranslated was obvious but still a great moment that shows the wonders Weber has done. He's taken a character who on paper should be horrible and made him not only believable but sympathetic. So the show is finally hittings its stride and living up to its potential and if Sorkin keeps delievering on eps like this, we'll be in for more fun to come.moreless
An incredibly amazing episode. I can\'t get enough.
I loved this episode. I love all of Aaron Sorkin\'s Studio 60 On The Sunset Strip episodes. Aaron Sorkin is an amazing writer. He writes drama, he writes comedy, he writes to educate us, to make us more aware, to think, to laugh, to love. He does all these things in Studio 60 On The Sunset Strip. Nevada Day, Part II is a perfect example.\
Sorkin starts the episode out with a heavy topic that is currently in the news; the Christian Right\'s rejection of homosexual relationships. At the end of Part I Harriet is accosted by what Sorkin terms a \"gay street tough.\" Tom Jeter steps in to shield her from the ugliness and the bad guy falls over a bush and lands on the hard asphalt parking lot. Later Jeter is arrested, but due to an old parking ticket in Nevada he is extradited to that state. Unfortunately he is wearing Simon Stile\'s jacket, which contains in it\'s pocket a half-smoked joint. Simon, having already been caught twice, and a half-smoked joint being a felony in Nevada sets up the drama in which you\'re never really sure what the final legal resolution WILL be. Guest star John Goodman keeps you from knowing exactly which way it\'s going to go for Tom until the end.\
In a case of \"what goes around, comes around\" Jordan is forced to make a request of Harriet based on the fall-out of a misquoted article and then winds up being preached to by corporate head honcho Wilson White herself regarding her ex-husband\'s book of lies. It certainly brings to light how out-of-control the media has become and how easily we as the public are swayed by any number of packs of lies.\
Aaron Sorkin\'s comedy extends through sarcasm, wit and just plain silliness in the case of Alex and Jeannie who laugh like two year old\'s at the name of the Nevada town Pahrump or the physical comedy of Danny Tripp positioning himself to lean against a Police car that has been sitting in the hot Nevada sun only to find it\'s true scalding temperature. It\'s also the little things that add to the humor. We see Samatha several times throughout the episode with her hair up in curlers reminiscent of the 1960s which almost makes the comedy sketch \"Judgmental Credit Card Rep\" funnier than it actually is.\
I love the way the comedy always bounces back after scenes that bring tears to my eyes, like Tom Jeter being forced by a judge to have to deal with the possibility of losing his brother overseas and the sarcasm of Danny Tripp as he asks the flight attendant whether the making of caesar salad is keeping the plane from going as fast as it can. (Although I think the correct response should have been \"We can arrange for you to get out and help push if you\'d like.")\
We learn fun facts in this episode such as to be a journalist in Brazil you have to have not only a college degree in journalism, but a license as well or that the 820th Red Horse squadron of the US Air Force goes into war zones and builds things incredibly fast and the casualty rate for multiple tours in the middle east is likened to playing Russian Roulette with one\'s life.\
What I have found that I love most of all about this series is the fact that Aaron Sorkin is a man and knows...understands love. Not just man and woman love, but family love, self-respect and maturity of spirit. He seeks to inform us, not by just talking about an issue but making sure we understand the arguments of both sides. Most times each side\'s beliefs are not the shallow, egotistical generalizations frequently bandied about by opposing sides, but stem from concerns much deeper than the need to follow and be one of the flock. They are people searching for and finding their own truths and beliefs and we are allowed to benefit from it all.\
I have not only fallen in love with these characters, but as each episode airs I am wowed by the amazing depth of the cast. Matthew Perry really makes me believe he\'s in love with Sarah Paulson and Sarah does an incredible job of trying to balance her character\'s own feelings for Matt Albie against the list of ecumenical disagreements that tore their relationship apart. Nate Corddry continues to amaze me with his dramatic prowess as well as D. L. Hughley; both better known for their comedic abilities. Brad Whitford as the older and wiser Danny Tripp (as opposed to young and almost ADD Josh from West Wing) and Timothy Busfield as the easy going Cal are so perfectly cast for their roles. As each story reveals itself you learn even more intricate nuances, such as the look of terror on Nate Torrence\'s face when he\'s told his character has to take over the news desk or the sense that Simon Helberg is playing the credit card rep sketch down to show us how hard it is to work with scripts that were written for someone else. Amanda Peet\'s dry and sarcastic Jordan McDeere seems amazing vulnerable at some points and one is left to wonder if that\'s just her modus operandi to bring Studio 60\'s cast and crew up to their highest level of performance. Steven Weber brings a pomposity to Jack Rudolph that really makes you hate him.\
At the end of the show we are treated to a beautifully framed picture of two people who obviously love one another very deeply. Whether it was written in the script that way or just a directorial or cinematographer\'s choice, the fact that their love was shown without further innuendo was simply beautiful. I hope Aaron will continue to shed light on this love and build their deep friendship because it\'s something so rare in the world today. I hope Matt and Harriet figure out how to fix what was wrong the first time around so the second time is the charm.\
I was thrilled to hear that Studio 60 received the order for all 22 episodes. I dearly hope that NBC will have the courage to allow this show to survive more than two years. I thank Aaron Sorkin and the cast for the compromises made to keep this amazing show alive. I pray that NBC doesn\'t break my heart the way CBS and ABC have in the past by not supporting the show\'s longevity.moreless
A great episode by it's self, but to have MY squadron mentioned, WOW SEMPER DUCIMUS TO THE HORSE Mr.Goodman
First of all I need to mention that I am a SSGT in the 820th RED HORSE Sq. John Goodman smacked it right on the head, I can't believe he mentioned us. Where can I get a copy of that episode? I would love that and I know my commander would love that. Thank you SSgt Rik Reichert
Finally the Payoff.
This is the reason to have a 2 part episode. While part 1 of the Neveda Day episode was revealing. This episode was the payoff for all the plot lines that were left dangling. Yes You knew all along that they would get the "stars" of this fictional show back in time for the production. How and why the judge (excellently played by John Goodman by the way) would let them go. This episode allows us a real look behind the facade of a public persona. No less than 3 of the characters were forced to reveal who they are. Its a rare glimpse behind curtain. The moral to this story is a simple one. Don't believe the Hype.moreless
Amazingly well written and goes to show how this show is special.
I've liked this series since I saw the pilot at the beginning of the season. This is the first episode review I've written and I have to first state that although I very much enjoy this show, I am not blind to its detriments. Saying that, this episode really showed me how well written the dialogue in this show is. The parlay between characters has never been better, as can easily be seen in the final conversation between Matt and Harriet. Just listening to it being played out made me smile as it was so sweet, yet at the same time had the light comedic hook that required an exact amount of timing to pull it off right and in this scene it was perfect. The character development in this episode was also pivotal and lays out some great groundwork for the rest of the series. We see just how tough Jordan's job is, yet at the same time we see just how un-alone she is. Jack's defence of his company and Jordan is also a special moment as we have not seen a tirade that good since the pilot. Even the little scenes showing the return of Danny and Simon show just how good they are at what they do and how much they respect their co-stars, respectively. Now onto the things that bothered me slightly. The reconciliation of Tom's conflict was a little too quick and clean and seemed almost anti-climactic for the way that the situation was being drawn out. (although I must mention that John Goodman was outstanding in the part). I thought that the chinese were also slightly too laid back. The response to Jack's little camera accident was almost non-existant and the repercussions seemed to be negligent, which in real life probably would not be the case without a little bit of groveling.
Nevertheless,the little hints that are dropped in this episode are definitely great food for thought for the viewer that loves to speculate about the future, and oh what an interesting future it should be.moreless