Jan. 1st, 2011

This year I wrote Studio 60 fic in the shape of The Bend of Her Hair (3,000 words, Jordan/Danny, with a little Matt/Harriet, no warnings). It's bittersweet, and probably more bitter than sweet, because of all the relationships on the show, whether friendships or romantic relationships, I found theirs the least explicable.

The process of writing 'The Bend of Her Hair', and reading the other Studio 60 fic produced for the challenge, has prompted some thoughts on the show.

Studio 60 was the only Sorkin show that I've ever watched completely as it aired, and some of it was timeshifted thanks to my PVR. I watched the first few seasons of The West Wing as it aired, but the way the broadcaster shifted it about the schedule in the UK, made it more sensible to get the boxsets. Ditto for Sports Night, which I watched over the space of a few days.

There's a lot to like in Studio 60. Sorkin writes male friendships incredibly well, and I think that Danny Tripp and Matt Albie work beautifully together. There's a fantastic ensemble of characters, and the fact that Sorkin was tracing the details of his relationship with Kristin Chenoweth, doesn't detract from the glory that is Harriet Hayes, who is funny, smart, and decent. There's a pale reprise of Dan Rydell's issues with Jacob Rydell in Tom Jeter's relationship with his own father, and an episode exploring masculinity and performance. There is a fantastic double-bill called 'Nevada Day' that covers off city vs country, religious satire, international trade, business integrity, honour and war, and manages to skirt just the funny side of all-out farce. The show says some moderately interesting things about representation and patriotism, and tries to answer the question 'What is America?'.

The things I liked less )

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