Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip

Season 1 Episode 17

The Disaster Show

Aired Monday 10:00 PM May 24, 2007 on NBC

Episode Fan Reviews (15)

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out of 10
240 votes
  • This show should have been the finale, as no stars appeared in this episode. In my opinion this was thrown together right after the cancellation.

    How can you have an episode when 3 of the stars are MIA? It had moments that were funny, but it was not even barely good compared to some of the previous episodes. This show is already canceled and NBC is trying to get some money out of this albatross.
    The writers were also on vacation, too much made up drama, a very poor excuse for TV, but then what do you expect from NBC, they canceled Jag which ran for 7 years on CBS and has a spin off in it's 5th season. If you want to see what to watch, see what they cancel.
    They have Law and Order, Law and Order sex police, and Law and Order goofy guy and partner. The one show I thought would make it was the one with Jerry Orbach, but he died and so did the series.
  • I am not sure whether this story was originally written this way or has the story (and storyline) been changed ever since they knew the show would be cancelled, but the title was apt. More . . .

    I am not sure whether this story was originally written this way or has the story (and storyline) been changed ever since they knew the show would be cancelled, but the title was apt. Because the show featured behind-the-scenes happenings, it is rather apt to highlight the contribution of the prop people in helping run the show smoothly (or any show in that matter). One also learns that Cue-Card guys belong to this union. Some audience may not miss the three main actors (Perry, Whitford, and Peet) but they are the roles that shape the entire story. For this episode, their absence was all right because their "presence" was implied. Harriet alluded to Matt's character and her relationship to him during a good part of her appearance. I have seen them enough in previous episodes that not having any of them in just one episode was not a bother; as I said, their "presence" was implied.

    The ending was interesting, when Cal asked Janney if she had the time of her life. Could it have alluded to Aaron Sorkin who, despite the show's imminent cancellation, might still have a great time doing this. If so, Janney's response was representative of what Mr. Sorkin had felt about this work. Inaccuracy: "1" is not a prime number (Simon mentioned to Claire [sp] that he had tried all the prime numbers, stating 1, 3, 5, 7, and 11; if he was going to list the first 5, then he should have started with "2": 2, 3, 5, 7, and 11).

    As an aside, this episode reminded me of high-school productions when the director would on-purposely sabotage props to see whether the actors could improvise. In this episode, this would be demonstrated well by Janney who "offered her wallet" to the valet parking attendant (when she found out there was no prop money in it); while Tom played the role of someone who did not or could not improvise (by not helping Janney with the improvisation).
  • I know this is not the final show but it really feel like it. I almost weep in the end.

    Another brilliant script my A.S. as it move the three main character and let the supporting cast and guest star carry the whole show. The pace is fast moving and humorous. I know this is not the finale but when Allison Janney say good bye, I think it is saying to us. The writer must already know that they are going to be canceled. This is my favourite show this season. I can't wait to get it on DVD.
  • The episode title said it all.

    From the very beginning this episode sucked. I know this kind of thing happens in real life but this jumped the shark. Where was Matt and Danny? Jordan? The show isn't the same without them. It seems like ever since Christmas they lost steam. It's like they knew they were going to get cancelled and stopped trying.
  • At least now I'm not going to miss this show once it's gone for good.

    Wow, what can I say about this episode? I'd really missed the show since it was taken off the air months ago, but now it's been ruined, and I probably won't even watch the remaining episodes.

    Harriet was completely obnoxious, and out of character. Obviously the show was a disaster, but as someone who works in television, I did not believe any of the backstage action. Where were Matt and Danny? Did Bradley Whitford and Matthew Perry just give up on the show?

    It seemed to me that this episode didn't follow any of the arc of the rest of the season.

    And the bomb threat was just a cheap attempt at humour. The only thing that I found remotely interesting about this episode was the wildcat strike by the propmasters, and the chaos it created.
  • Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip is nothing without Matt, Danny and Jordan!

    This episode cleary showed S60 giving up too quickly. I think that they just made this episode after they found out that the show would be cancelled and looks like they just made an episode that could fill their timeslot. It was a bad idea to show this episode after a long break especially if they really want to attract viewers. Since the start of episode, i've been waiting for Matt, Danny and Jordan to appear but to my surprise they didnt have any airtime in the whole episode! It was really disappointing to watch S60 because i thought that even if it is canclled, it would still show its brilliance in the last remaining episodes. They did a risky move and just to inform them, they really disappointed a lot of people.
  • A capable enough return for the final stretch

    Considering how long it’s been since the last original episode of the series hit air, it was wise to slip this relatively self-contained episode into the order. Giving the story a little more time to breathe and the supporting cast a chance to shine had to be the operative thought, considering that the three main cast members are nowhere to be found.

    At the end of the previous episode, Matt was searching for the “4AM miracle”, something that would break his writer’s block in just enough time to allow the show to work. Harriet’s break with Luke was the apparent catalyst, and one might have assumed that the show went off without a hitch. It seems like the miracle was rather short lived, given how the show actually progressed.

    Because of the stakes for Matt, seen in the previous episode, it’s a bit off-putting that he’s not reacting to the meltdown. That said, I’m not sure that there was time in the episode for Matt, Danny, or Jordan to add a substantial contribution. I suspect that the next episode will deal with their reaction to the show in some fashion. At least it should, because with Matt on a downward spiral with drug addiction, this apparent failure feeds into his suspicion that any trouble with the show is the fault of his writing.

    Jordan’s absence is covered nicely by Jack’s presence. Jordan is under heavy fire for her choices, and Jack can only protect her so far. Danny’s mistake with the propmaster union, by virtue of his relationship with Jordan, could have disastrous consequences should the program take a ratings hit from the subsequent problems. I would hope that all of this would play into the final arc.

    It’s great to see Cal in the spotlight, because his frenetic production style is one of the highlights of the series. Busfield has a wonderful sense of comic timing, and despite the fact that it could be well over the top, he keeps it reined in just enough to make it viable and believable. It’s also great to see him work with Alison Janney again; they have a comfortable chemistry that works regardless of what characters they play.

    It’s also interesting to get a glimpse of how the rest of the cast is dealing with the Matt/Harriet issue. There is that real world reaction to the person who’s been in a long-term on/off relationship, where everyone else around that person just gets sick of the routine. Some members of the audience are in the same frame of mind, so it was good to see the characters themselves struggle with it.

    There was also a subplot involving Simon, which focused on a less-than-admirable side of his personality. With so many characters searching for a meaningful relationship, it’s interesting to see someone with more of a reputation for playing the field. That said, it’s unfortunate that the “player” is the most prominent African-American character, since it seems a bit stereotypical. It’s still an amusing if predictable subplot, but it’s hard to ignore the implications.
  • What the heck!?!

    What the heck was this episode? After a long hiatus, which was ridiculous to have in the first place, Studio 60 makes its comeback with THIS episode, an episode that almost stands alone as filler. I'm not saying that we need Amanda, Bradley, and Matt in every episode (ok...maybe I am saying that) but the show lacked a certain oomph without not only them but also, more importantly, without their storylines. Harriet whining wasn't enough to pull viewers back into the "will they" or "won't they" story. It even put me off. I wanted to know more about Matt's growing drug addiction and the baby to come. Seriously, why were the other actors absent? What was the point of this episode other than to give them time off? However, having said all this, the show was aptly titled. This episode was the "disaster" episode of the season indeed and I'll still be back to see the show rise from the ashes.
  • Watching the show on DVD, I didn't miss a pick-up with the story-line but I missed some of the characters whose absence was not really explained.

    I know this was aired after a hiatus but since I'm watching it on DVD, I had no problem with the storylines themselves. What I had problem with, was the absence of characters. Danny is negotiating with the prop guys, it's fine. Shouldn't Jordan be with him? It was not mentioned as far as I remember. Given they are outside, Matt should be in charge of the show and "helping the cast to write their lines on their palms". It was absolutely illogical. Even with this, the "remaining" actors did a great job. It was good to see more of Timothy Busfield and Steven Weber also did an excellent job playing the drunk. (By the way, he told to Kim in an earlier episode that he and his wife are separated, how can she be n the backstage area?) I also liked the idea to show that the lead actors are suffering without having a good crew around them.
  • Just relieved to have it back on air.

    I marked this one as special because it was just so good to have S60 back on TV again!! I loved it so much I didn't even realise until the end that Matt, Danny and Jordan didn't appear - well done to the remaining cast! And for the record, it was so great to see Allison Janney again. More please.
  • Almost, but not quite there

    "The Disaster Show" - Not so disastrous after all...

    The "prop-guys leaving the show" story, although it seemed familiar from earlier episodes (Ricky & Ron), was able to bring some hilarious moments during the show - which brings me to my next, needless-to-say, point:
    Allison Janney was outstanding! I really think I would have given a lower mark to the episode if it wasn't for her. The funny thing about the episode - I only noticed the absence of the 3 leads about halfway through the show... It was pretty weird but the rest of the cast pulled a great show even without them...

    Overall, there was nothing forwarding the previous storylines in this episode (I'm guessing it's because the 3 leads were not there) and that's why I felt that it was a filler episode, but inspite of that - I was entertained - and that's what's it's all about really :).

    Too bad it's cancelled... This show has SO much potential.
  • A good episode, some very funny moments.

    Not the best Studio 60 episode but it was still better than most of what is on tv today. I enjoyed the other characters having a little more time to shine and the dialogue was witty and hilarious as usual. Cal (Timothy Busfield) was a standout in this one as he calmly kept the show on the air while everything around him fell apart. The dialogue between Cal and Jack (Steven Weber) was exceptionally written and very well delivered.

    I'm going to miss this show terribly when it is gone as it may be the only thing left on television that doesn't make me feel dumber for having watched it.
  • I love the quick wit of this show.

    Being a newbie I know I shouldn't be posting first but I recorded this episode last night and got up at 5AM to watch it. I love this show, is there anything we can do to keep it on the air? Is it to late? Please give me more!!
  • It's the Allison Janney show!

    It says a lot that the lack of Danny, Matt and Jordan actually makes this episode more tolerable than the last several. Putting up the montage of bad skits does show why it didn't catch on with some but the set up is believable from Danny being that much of an idiot with the union to Cal not knowing about the cue card guys being with the propmasters. So the ep was able to make do without them. Of course that has to do with its guest star.

    Someone, anyone, get Allison Janney a new show! This woman is utterly brilliant, putting up with the insanity, threatening to kill everyone involved and doing her best with the skits. I loved when Cal told her during the opening about the strikes and she just reacts with wide eyes and comments to him on air. I did think Sorkin was being a little too over the top with the ending of Cal telling her that even when TV is a disaster, it's fun. As for the subplots, the Simon one was dragged on a bit too long to sell him as a womanizer. The bomb scare also was hobbled by the stuff of Cal assuming it was a Muslim and having it be a white stoner. As for Jack, is it really that believable for an executive to be spending so much time of this one show drinking? But I did like the thing where the entire cast finally calls Harriet on how she can't use them as a defense to not get with Matt, basically saying "do it or don't, just stop bothering us with it!" That was long overdue and I was happy to see it happen.

    It's odd to talk about a show when we know it's ending but this showcased how it could have worked, with the behind the scenes stuff rather than the speeches and poor romantic plots. And again, thanks to Allison for making it work so well.
  • No Matt. No Danny. No Jordan. Did we miss them? Actually NO!

    Timothy Busfield - since I saw you on the West Wing you are one of my top actors. You held this episode well. Exceptionally well.
    I don't care that many people thought that this episode "sucked". It didn't. In fact, it had an aura of flowing TV that has been missing since the West Wing finished. I think that it will be a trajic loss to TV when S60 leaves the airwaves. But let's hope for more and better from my favourite man of the moment: Aaron Sorkin.