There is no sadder moment in time than watching the ending of a great body of work; especially when it is shining its brightest. Aaron Sorkin has taken me back to my favorite West Wing episodes with this episode of Studio 60 On The Sunset Strip. With the heart and soul of "The West Wing's In Excelsis Deo" Sorkin proves his talents as a master story crafter with K & R, Part 1. The best part of Aaron Sorkin's writing isn't just that it's intelligent, but it provokes us to think, to take another look at why we believe what we believe. Perhaps that's why the show never caught on. It called to mankind to be accountable for who we have become. It asked us to think a line above the tawdry exhibitionism that reality shows like "Survivor" or "The Bachelor" make their living on. It asked us to question who we are and why we are that way. The masses, unfortunately, are not yet up to the task. Perhaps the fact that it was set in Hollywood was the poison that seeped throughout the season keeping mainstream viewers from embracing it. Sorkin neophytes who appear to have only jumped on the S60 bandwagon because they watched "The West Wing" complained bitterly that the show wasn't up to their standards. They ignored character development or the importance of the topics that WERE debated in the show. They couldn't cling on to the story lines based on choices that we as a people must make in our every day lives and the complicated mess that sometimes comes from making the wrong ones. Instead, they turned their noses up demanding nothing less but perfection. The problem being perfection to one is not perfection to others.
I have loved "Studio 60" from the very beginning. I loved the fact that Bradley Whitford perfectly matured himself to present his new character. I was enthralled at being able to watch Matthew Perry handle much grittier and sometimes dark drama, such as the spiral into drug use. The cast to me was perfectly selected for each of their characteristics AND as a brilliant ensemble. The opening two shows sealed the deal for me. How could you not want to be exposed to one of the greatest debates of our time? Matt and Harriet, who are probably soul mates struggling to grow and using one another as a pearl uses sand, go back and forth about the issue of faith. While I have no idea where Sorkin stands on this issue personally, the fact that he can give such strength to both sides of the argument with the same pen fascinates me. But that is always what has enamored me about Sorkin's work. His fearlessness in addressing whatever issue he likes. Some people have called Sorkin self-indulgent in this particular work. If so, he is not the only one being indulged. He has fed me, satiated me with his characters and his story. Once I see that last episode I will no longer be fed such a satisfying meal. I will have to be content to watch only silly, worn representations of the condition of man; each show stressing the same tired, boring topics of fidelity and who's trying to destroy who. K & R, Part 1 was an amazing example of why I love Aaron Sorkin's work so much. It moved me to tears. The actor's performances were incredible, the story topical and the music, as always, the cherry on top - a perfect experience. I cannot imagine which way Aaron will go with the last episode. I don't know if he knew they would not renew his show when he wrote it or when it was filmed. I know how I'd like it to end, but much like the beloved "Sports Night" there will be nothing left but fan fiction to know where these characters go from here and *that* I will mourn. No one moves me like Aaron Sorkin. I can only hope I will get the chance to be moved again.