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1-2: "The Cold Open" 2006.09.25 (recap)


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#1

Joe R

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:15 AM

Bring on the Crazy Christians!

Please remember: read the thread before you post. Post substantively. Don't just post real-time notes you made during the episode.

Enjoy!

#2

The 2nd Evil

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 9:59 PM

That song is going to be stuck in my head all week.

#3

TheAngleMan

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:00 PM

So I've watched the show 4 times now and this was great. Definately better the pilot.

Was this episode written before or after the upfronts, because Jordan's joke about being high reminds me about Matt saving Aaron after the line about bad crack on the playground. Still a great scen and i thought Amanada was much better in this episode.

I talked about the internet scene in the spoiler thread, but I have a little more to say about it. It's clear Sorkin still isn't very happy about the internet chatter, and given that a large portion of it is spelling coffin with an ough I can't blame him entirely. I wish he'd acknowledge there is intelligent and reasoned discourse on the internet. Maybe down the road Tom will check out a few more sites.

Am I the only one starting to feel bad for Ricky and Ron? it seems clear Noone likes them, I mean maybe they are hacks, but he's going so over the top on how bad they are, you have to wonder who they are supposed to represent. Though one of the writers looks an awful lot like Bruce Villanch. I also liked the acknowledgment of Aaron writing everything

Certainly getting a better feel for who Harriet is, and how her religion seems not to clash with her as a performer.
I also liked Tom and Simon. Sim is a uniquie nickname I like it.

I loved the song. Has I am the very model been parodied before? Yes. Does it matter? No. It was a great Parody (though can someone please tell what the line is after Harriet says she's going to Heaven?

More please.

PS Clay Aiken bashing? Always good.

Joe R Our previews are different. Can we post about them at all outside the spoiler thread? The main points are the same though.

All promos can be dicussed in the Spec thread or the Promos thread. Just not in the episode thread. -- Joe R

Edited by Joe R, Sep 26, 2006 @ 10:39 AM.


#4

Sorkid28

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:00 PM

That was really good. I loved the ending and also there was a Sports Night shout out with the 'Good show.' Next week's should be really good too. S60 also has Elli with them. YAY! Good show!

#5

Abbagirl

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:01 PM

As soon as Cal said 'Model Citizens' and there was a pregnant pause - I KNEW they were going to bring the Gilbert & Sullivan!!!
The only thing I didn't like about the song was Harriet's spoken 'aside'. I either didn't get the reference or it just wasn't funny...
LOVING me some Matt & Danny!!
(and EVAN!)

#6

McGonz

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:01 PM

Watched it for the first time tonight. It was alright, didn't love it, but will tune in again. I was a little dissappointed we didn't get to actually see the Crazy Christian sketch.

#7

KBWhit

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:00 PM

Harriett called him "Matthew" - did anyone else catch that??? Please tell me I'm not crazy...

#8

Mean Mr Mustard

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 9:53 PM

Aside from Amanda Peet still not doing it for me, I thought this episode was pretty entertaining -- but not as good as last week. I can't put my finger on it, but that little prayer before they went on just seemed out of place.

Also, did we have to rush into the Harriet/Matt love story so soon? C'mon, Sorkin . . .

#9

Eric54

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:01 PM

Is this substantive enough? I started to get anxious when I knew there were only ten minutes left of the episode. Fantastic! I love Amanda Peat!

#10

Normy

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:01 PM

I know this isn't a "substantive" post, but I was just wondering...

when Matt made that comment about how Jeanie's been there longer than Harriet, did he mean she was an original cast member?

Edited by Normy, Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:06 PM.


#11

Special

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:02 PM

I think it's important to get this out early:

Amanda Peet? Still sucks.

I loved the song. Better than any opener on SNL in a while.

#12

Markeer

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:02 PM

Could you be any more self-referential?

Joking, I actually liked the Chandler bit coming from BW, as well as the rest of this show. In many ways it shows more promise than the pilot as the characters had action beyond introducing themselves to us all.

Obviously Chandler and Josh Lyman were good, but what struck me was Amanda Peet seemed to keep up with the others pretty well. She's the one main character with no Sorkin history (okay, also Wings boy) so I've been wondering how well she'd mesh.

So far so good.

Edited by Markeer, Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:04 PM.


#13

shoemoney2night

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:03 PM

Vintage Sorkin. And I guess we're not getting real credits. I don't really mind. The Sports Night method gives us an extra half minute of episode.

#14

jthomas666

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:03 PM

The show's starting to grow on me a bit. It's still finding it's way, though. Which is OK. Most shows take several episodes before they find their identity. Good chemistry between Matt Perry and Bradley Whitford.

Does anyone get the impression that Tommy Schlamme plans out tracking shots based on degree of difficulty? Now, not only does he weave in and out through the set/offices/dressing rooms, but there are mirrors all over the place, so he has to be extra careful that the camera isn't picked up in a reflection.

The "Modern Major Studio" opening was kind of neat, but it begs comparison w/ SNL's "Not Gonna Phone It In Tonight" opening, and doesn't quite measure up; too much repetition.

I've always though Amanda Peet was attractive, but that's been about it. She must be paying off the makeup people at NBC, though, 'cause she's freaking stunning.

Edited by jthomas666, Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:04 PM.


#15

antivern

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:02 PM

Holy crow. Between this and Heroes, which completely kicked my ass, I'm totally indisposed on Monday nights now.

#16

Ozzyols

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:03 PM

My thoughts on the Episode.

I liked how they introduced the Jeannie/Matt issue without having to do a lot of exposition (unlike the sides that we saw floating around at one point) in those few words they had established what had happened, and then it’s nicely fleshed out by the gang later in the piece.

The whole “Barbara Streisand loving Michael Moore worshiping Jackasses” was brilliant.

Amanda Peet seemed a little more at ease in Jordan’s Skin this time around (like many did speculate.) At the start she was bright as breezy because that’s what was called for, she was courting the media.

I also like that Brad is showing more and more that he’s not Josh reincarnate… I don’t know what it was about the way he spoke to people in the ep, but his inflection and intonation with regards to certain words were different… I think he has shifted the emphasis slightly.

The moment between Matt and Danny over who was taking Wes’s office was brilliant (and on that with Kudos to the set designers… did anyone else notice the “frame marks” on the walls of the office. If Wes had been there for ever it was nice to see those little fade marks around where his photos etc would have been… now that’s attention to detail!)

Not sure about Jeannie yet… I think my biggest problem with her is just a cosmetic one (and I DO mean cosmetic… for her skin type I think the lipstick that they gave her was a little too insipid. – it needed to be a more earthy tone than pink.) Mind you that being said, wow Allison Janney (season 7) clone in the white dress at the end!

The tension between Danny and Simon was interestingly good, and the explanation for the reason behind it was very plausible.

I really liked the fact that after her little explosion Matt handed Harry her ass on plate. That exactly what as her BOSS he needed to do, that was amazingly well written.

Gilbert and Sullivan ROCK!

The Ed Asner doff of the cap with the “You’ve got Spunk” comment – very nice!

There was so much in the ep that I liked… it’s hard to keep it all straight. The majority of it will need to go at the character threads…

It seems that in the universe of NBS that the WGA’s were held in September… well who would have guessed <grin> (Maybe they got delayed this year).

I liked the balance that they created with regards to the Right/Left dead set middle over the religious aspect… The far right of ANYTHING will always get a pasting on television – especially from shows of the late night comedy type, it’s been that way since vaudeville and the old time music halls of London (G&S spring to mind). That being said, so has the far left of anything as well from the more conservative side of the equation. Every night we turn on Leno, or Letterman or Conan and see the same sort of jokes being played out. I think AS did a great job of capturing the essence of that with what he said, and I’m sure some people will get in a fluff around the place about what was said but – I’m pretty certain that if you hung out in the corridors of a major network those sorts of conversations are there to be heard.

But on the flipside you saw the team huddle up and obviously “Something” of a ritual of thanks or the like happens on a regular basis with the cast because of “Whose turn is it?” came up… I found it nice for them to show quiet faith, personal faith – some people had their heads bowed, eyes closed, others like Matt didn’t – so although we don’t know what he believes or doesn’t – he’s shown to “Believe” in his cast and crew and respects that enough to be there with them. Now that’s classy!

My Mum who has been kept apprised of all the goings on relating to S60 watched the episode last night and got to the whole “Blog issue” and went… “That was it? I was expecting someone to be burnt in effigy” it was a nice little outside perspective that made me giggle.

All in all – I really loved it, and can’t wait for next week!

#17

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:03 PM

Whew. GREAT episode! I can't count the number of times I chuckled out loud!

Some quick thoughts:

Amanda Peet improved greatly. She's really fitting into the role now (and, thankfully, has lost that deer-in-the-headlights look).

The Matt and Harriet chemistry was terrific. Sarah Paulson is so awesome.

I also enjoyed the Danny/Simon ("Sim"?!) subplot; it was nice to see a little anxiety/animosity about how Matt and Danny left the show and subsequently returned. Bradley Whitford really got rid of the Josh vibes tonight, didn't he? I guess he really IS the Big Shoulders.

I still like Jack.

And, hurrah, Gilbert & Sullivan! What's a Sorkin show without it?

Edited by SiriuslyLupin, Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:06 PM.


#18

Veruka

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:03 PM

Am I the only one who is really despising Harriet? She's incredibly immature (you break up with someone, you have to deal with him dating other people, honey), which surprises me. Also, I just don't see any chemistry between her character and Matthew Perry's.

#19

thedude891

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:04 PM

No Crazy Christians! I feel gypped.

In other news, I quite enjoyed this episode. I love being all invested in the charachters like this after two episodes aired.

I'm resigned to the fact that Jordan is a know-it-all, but I love her still...mostly because she it hot...but also because I find her interesting.

The interactions between Harriet and Matt in this episode were quite endearing. I'm in no way a shipper of any sort, but these crazy kids need to get together. Which probably means they'll reconcile somewhere around season three.

I also was a big fan of Harriet this episode, "and if you have time, please drop something heavy on Matt's head." It's great to have a Christian character on a show who isn't a religious nutjob (ie: The Rapture woman).

My one big problem was that I didn't find "The Cold Open" all that funny. I would have much preferred to see "Crazy Christians."

I am also a big fan of the fact that this show isn't dumbed down at all and that you have to have some knowledge of the television agency (and the ablility to keep up with fast dialouge) to understand what's happening.

Can't wait for next week.

Edited by thedude891, Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:06 PM.


#20

honeybee1984

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:04 PM

Ok, That Rocked!!! It was man ..I just can't get my head around it .Thank god NBC is having the full episode on the website . And I can watch the replay again and again on Bravo and anyway you get the idea. Best line of the episode... and there were many ... ' Could you a be a little more jewish ? ' ... i fell out of my chair ... I am so jelaous of my dad rite now who gets to watch it a day before I do. Two things I am concerned about ...

1. Amanda Peet and her preganancy and public's general dislike of her career

2. Matthew and Sarah Paulson... still cant see their chemistry

Bring it Boss !!!

#21

superboy

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:05 PM

Superb and spot on.

That final scene has got to be some of the most brilliant television I've seen in a very long time, excluding the pilot of course. Sorkin is most likely my new writing God.

The cast is perfect too. Geeze, I'm just speechless after that last scene. So good. So, so good.

#22

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:05 PM

Am I the only one starting to feel bad for Ricky and Ron? it seems clear Noone likes them

I feel a little bad for them, too, but it's an interesting dynamic that they bring because of that, and it could set the path for some potentially good storylines.

Also, did we have to rush into the Harriet/Matt love story so soon? C'mon, Sorkin . . .

Oh, word.

Great episode.
I loved the conversation about the clock and Harriet bursting in Matt's meeting.
I heard her call him Matthew later, too. It could be a girlfried/ boyfriend thing.

#23

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 9:57 PM

I really enjoyed this episode. What would've made it better? Less Jordan and Jack. My entire mood changed when they appeared on screen. Jordan in particular. She's just not working. Make them like Bartlet was originally going to be - sporadic. Non existant would be preferable.

Jordan needs to be a character that's advisarial with Matt and Danny. Jordan needs to be there for them when necessary, but will have no qualms about screwing them over. She needs to clash with them - Danny in particular. I hate to say this, because I don't really want a WW redux, but an Allison Janney-type actress that can bring the fight would've been perfect. Amanda Peet is too prissy and not, IMO, able to handle the dialogue. Her timing is way off.

I adore Matt Perry in this role. And Brad in those glasses - sexy.

#24

GotGlassTubes

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:06 PM

If there were EVER any doubts about Amanda Peet's character, I take tonight's show as a big STFU from Sorkin AND Peet. Her meeting with the sales and affiliates representatives was excellent. And as one of the few who seem to be behind her, a big itoldjaso or two from me will do.

Hosts turn into name drops. That's the only little pet peeve of mine. Mark Wahlberg and the White Stripes, yet neither of them shown. I realize there can't be big name guest stars every week, but I hope this doesn't become a trend. Only minor nitpick in an otherwise stellar hour.

I thought I was overrating this show because I had watched it so much that some of the power had dulled.

This was fresh.

"We're gonna be the first network to charge a coward fee."

"I hate spunk."

Hee.

#25

BackstreetGirl

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:07 PM

I liked this episode much better than the pilot. Ooohh, I'm startin to get that warm and fuzzy feeling again!
There was so much in there I need to listen to again. The dialogue was so fast and furious, which is what I adore about AS. I'm really loving the whole Matt/Danny relationship. They play so well against each other, and Matthew Perry continues to blow me away.
And Dougie!! Bubbelah!! I love me some Evan Handler.
Still meh on Amanda, though.

#26

Cione

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:06 PM

(a) We need to see full lyrics to that song, I'm very curious. Was so glad we got to see the whole thing and I hope that's a pattern with sketches from the show!

(b)

Harriett called him "Matthew" - did anyone else catch that??? Please tell me I'm not crazy...


I know quite a few couples where the girl is the only one on earth who calls the guy by his full or real name. It worked for me.

#27

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:06 PM

Yay! An episode with tails! I’ll leave the real critique to others and would just like to share a few random and not necessarily chronological thoughts.

The sentiment that Jordan expressed in the press conference about people who watch television being at least as smart as people who make television programmes was Sorkin speaking. I’ve heard him say that exact line. Personally, I’ve always thought I was smarter, but who am I to judge I suppose. But anyone who can get a mention of a movie about Nikola Tesla into a show about sketch comedy I would get down on one knee (yes, one knee) for. Those of you who know me will understand why I smiled at that reference, and no, the bag tags at the airport haven’t changed yet. But I digress.

I loved seeing all the clutter in the offices and in the backstage area and I’m sure that we’re going to have some fun spotting what the various bits and pieces are. I would already like to nominate the clock for a Tubey next year quite obviously.

One other odd thing popped into my mind during the writers meeting – was that really a Rastafarian Eddie Izzard, and did anyone ever dress like that no matter their age?

I enjoyed Sarah Paulson’s performance in this and the scenes that she had with Matt, lady, I could feel that pain. Maybe the boys will be “so screwed”, but I really do want to see where those two are going.

The other line that I particularly liked was “I just graduated from Yale Drama School – I don’t belong here”. Can I please show that scene and what follows to all the graduates in my faculty before they get sent out into the big wide world please.

The other brief shot I smiled at was after “They hope that you don’t mind that their producer was caught doing lots of blow.” That little smile of self-deprecation on Danny’s face.

And I can’t get coffin, coughin’, or any other derivation of that in here without anyone noticing. Drat.

One last thing…immaf….come out, come out wherever you are! I’ve been busting a gut to tell you to cheer up all day. Hope that did the trick!

And for those of you watching a repeat, sing-along-a-pirates…I sadly, very sadly, in my pyjamas, have a transcipt if you would like it. Incidentally Aaron, please don’t try to hard to become the very model of a modern major anything. I’ll be sorely disappointed if you do. Any my spelling usually is shite anyway.

#28

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 9:59 PM

With each minute I love the show more and more, however, the internet joke is so old. So very old. Not old, Gilbert & Sullivan references, that killed me.

I certainly hope that Jordan is the Mandy of the show (although I do like her) and not Harriett. I love that Matt was the one who is still a goner for her. Love it!

Edited by Gracelessly, Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:08 PM.


#29

mtlchickie

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:07 PM

"Can you just BE a little more Jewish?" Cut to Matthew Perry looking around as in "Ahhh! Chandler Bing speak! And I'm not saying it!"

Now that it has aired in the U.S., I did like this better than the pilot. I still find Peet a wee bit too young to be a network exec, but I'm slowly warming up to her. She's a ball breaker, she does what she thinks is best for the show, doesn't bow down to advertisers and is a snazzy dresser (I covet her outfit she wore at the formal announcement.)

Other than the brilliance of the Pirates of Penzance homage, I really enjoyed the flow of conversation between Matt and Harry when she asked about Jeannie (or is it Jeanette?) It was laced with sarcasm, recollection and sadness. Loved it.

#30

sjoanzors

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Posted Sep 25, 2006 @ 10:07 PM

I was a little dissappointed we didn't get to actually see the Crazy Christian sketch.

This is one thing that bugged me, and I wonder if it will continue be an annoyance for me with this show. Basically, I know it's a drama (and wouldn't have it any other way), but it's about funny people- and though Sorkin is witty, I wonder if he can really write sketch comedy. If yes, then I'd love to see it, but if no (which I'm guessing is closer to the truth) then you have a conundrum: show crappy sketches that are supposed to be funny, or show no sketches at all. Obviously you go for the latter, but that leaves me feeling like I'm missing a big piece of the show. If I'm watching a show about an athelete who is praised for his/her abilities, I want to see them in action. If I'm watching a show about a *ahem* politician known for his/her public speaking abilities, I want to hear them speak. If I'm going to hear week after week that Harriet is crazytalented and Matt is superhilarious, I'd like some proof! So that's a bit of a pickle.

Harriett called him "Matthew" - did anyone else catch that??? Please tell me I'm not crazy...

Why would this make you crazy? Matthew Perry's character name is Matthew. Or am I misinterpreting your question?