9.27.2009

Sorkin vs. Whedon -- What kind of day has it been?


Someone recently posed to me the Sophie's Choice of TV writerly geekdom: A Sorkin vs. Whedon variant of the desert island game. If you could only watch -- or, these days, rewatch -- only one, either Sorkin or Whedon, which would you choose?

That's a rough one. A brutal one, more precisely. And I've been pondering it for some time now. All throughout this fine day. Or really throughout the lovely night that was last night, and this morning. All while I've been wondering why it is that I've gotten so little done this weekend.

In part I blame the sundry batteries of everyday life. The quotidian bullshit. In part I blame my poor wife's bout with the flu. In part I blame the lovely excess of a trip to the Stinking Rose.

But mainly I blame Aaron Sorkin. I am fully lost, mired and chin-deep in a pig-in-mud Renaissance with The West Wing. I'm in the thick of it. Which is really due to the fact that I was never a huge West Wing fan to begin with.

This is a difficult admission. One that I've made to few people. Among the Sorkinites, this admission has attracted doubt and silent judgement. My own wife usually gives me the loving smile one usually reserves for a silly boy who doesn't know any better. And when I said something along this lines to Michael over a Chicago style dog, I'm pretty sure I detected a well-disguised look of suspicion.

It's not that I didn't like it. Or that I was merely being stubborn and contrary to its legions of fans and Emmy-laden praises. Not entirely, anyway. In large part it was my extreme loyalty to Sports Night, Sorkin's underdog. But mainly it was because The West Wing aired during a time in which I didn't watch TV.

An already long story short: In college I had neither the access nor the money to watch TV. I was immersed in theater and films. So I missed out on most of Buffy and The West Wing during those years. And while it's odd for a guy who lusts after a job writing for TV to have not watched any TV for years, it's the truth. I literally watched no TV for at least four years. Probably more.

And then I was shamed, pushed and prodded into a TV-on-DVD coma that lasted for about another four years.

And now, when I have much to do and a writing-to-do list that is piled up higher than I will admit --

I'm way too far gone in a discovery-disguised-as-rediscovery of The West Wing. My wife has the full series on DVD at ready disposal right by our DVD player. And her bout with the flu has left the case open and its contents scattered about.

And I'm lost. I just blurred through the first season. And I'm realizing how sparse and thin my knowledge of the show actually is.

My weekend is a goner. I'm still going to try and get some work done. But I can't resist putting in disc after disc. The sun's passage is lost on me and I'm starting to think that the troubling choice put me yesterday is less Sophie and more Bartlet.

I do adore the Whedon. But, Mr. Whedon, my apologies.

ps. I'm putting in yet another disc.

1 comment:

Josh said...

Ahh, sinking into a TV show -- is there any better feeling (or more time-consuming pastime) in the world?

Jul and I have been doing this too, lately. With -- of all things -- Supernatural.

Go ahead, judge us.