This is the typical overhyped, over-sophisticated and self-important production you can expect from the overblown Alan Sorkin.
The motor-mouth blather was novel in The West Wing. Now it’s just plain old. Who wants to strain their necks trying to get the essence of a fast-paced conversation roaring past you? I would like to see the actors EMOTE not just be some stiff talking heads. The only actor who had any credibility was Steven Weber because somehow the directors couldn’t force him to engage in that signature ping pong talk that drones on through the show. He came across as a genuine human being and was well cast for the role.
Regardless of frenzied fan reviews, Amanda Peet is poorly cast as the wonder child of a network. She’s loses credibility when she always seems to have a goofy smile on her face as if she’s in constant PR for a Miss America title. I know the writers wanted her to portray a network charmer (only because of the dialog Steven Weber gives) but it’s just not happening.
The speech Hirsh gives at the beginning is ridiculously contrived. I had to listen to that speech several times on NBC’s streaming download to figure out what point was trying to be made. The whole thing was so schizophrenic it finally occurred to me the writers were just throwing all kinds of arguments out there because they HAD NONE. To say comedy writers aren’t given enough leeway in this day and age is laughable. If a show isn’t funny blame the lack of talent of the writers and stop railing against the network or censors or whoever the speech was directed at.
And Mathew Perry—OMG what is he doing in front of the camera? The only redeeming quality he had was playing a punk guy on “Friends” who knew how to rip off one-liners. Now he’s in a dramatic role with zero appeal and we’re all supposed to sit back and marvel in awe at his acting skills. Pukarama, any actor could have taken that role.