Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Sork of July - Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip 1.15

A happier time; Matt and Luke were friends, Matt wore hats backwards (via www.ign.com)
To reiterate, Sorkin has done a sports show, a news show and a comedy show.  I think the next aspect of television Sorkin should do should be a behind the scenes look at an Entertainment Tonight-type show.  

You have the crusading anchor who cares about the stories they should be covering.  You've got the producer who feels the pull of the network, yet understands where the anchor is coming from. You have a control room.  What more could you want?  

Today's episode of Studio 60 is "The Friday Night Slaughter." 
Host & Musical Guest: Jennifer Love Hewett & *Nsync (flashback) Peyton Manning & Diana Valdes (present)

# of references “Crazy Christians”:  1

Sketches Referenced: Being Neve Campbell, Crazy Christian (flashback), Singing Teacher (both)

Sketches Shown: None

It’s Friday night at Studio 60 and Matt is watching this week’s musical guest Diana Valdes as she does various sound checks and whatnot.  Andy pops into Matt’s office to chat about how this office is better than Matt’s first office, but can immediately tell that Matt’s in a weird place.  Andy informs Matt that if he ever needs someone to talk to, Andy is there for him.  A guy who tragically lost his family in a car crash is offering Matt help. 

Matt brushes him off and immediately after Andy leaves, Matt reaches for some pills and suspiciously takes them.

This episode sees an entire storyline devoted to Harriet’s first week at Studio 60 and the effect she had on Matt.  We see Matt’s first “office” being the floor outside of the writer’s room.  We see Matt get distracted by Harriet at the first Studio 60 meeting of that season and he gets publicly dressed down for it. 

We get to witness the first argument between Harriet and Matt, on her first day at the show.  We also see the origins of Crazy Christians, as Matt pitches the sketch to Harriet on her third day.

We witness beginning of the love triangle that is Luke/Harriet/Matt.  Luke and Matt shared an office at Studio 60 and Matt tells Luke about the Crazy Christians pitch and how it offended Harriet.  Since she’s cute Luke decides to write a sketch for Harriet in the hopes that it’ll lead to him shagging.  Matt quietly feels the same way, but unlike Luke, doesn’t overtly state it. 

Matt comes up “Being Neve Campbell” as a sketch for Harriet.  No one will read over it for him, until he sees Simon Stiles waiting to meet Wes.  Wes is testing Simon, by keeping him waiting, so he has time to look over Matt’s draft.  Just by looking at the sketch, Simon can tell Matt has a thing for Harriet. 

The dueling sketches vie for a spot on the show.  Since Harriet’s new, it’s unlikely Luke’s “Singing Teacher” or Matt’s “Being Neve Campbell” will survive the Friday night slaughter, but it’s impossible they both will.  Ultimately Luke’s sketch makes it on the show and helps make Harriet the household name she’s become.

Also during the flashback we get the story of Tim Batale.  Tim was a writer for Studio 60 that Wes fired because he was caught taking pills.  Fortunately Matt gets his office, but unfortunately Matt cares about Tim and is worried about him. 

In the present, neither Cal nor Danny remember Tim.  They’re also frustrated that Matt isn’t helping them decide what’s getting cut to make the final show.  It’s like his head is somewhere else.  Danny mentions that not only is the show Harriet heavy, but that most of the sketches are seven years old.  Clearly Danny recognizes something is up but basically leaves it alone. 

Danny and Cal would rather toy with Dylan and Tom, who really want their “Metric Conversion” sketch to make it to the show.  Tom and Dylan try everything from bribing to reasoning, to get their sketch on, but Danny rebuffs them at every turn. 

Matt visits Diana Valdes’ dressing room to thank her for filling in for a second cancellation by The White Stripes.  They bond over feeling sad and she offers him some eye drops to help cover up that he’s high on pills.  At first he pretends he isn’t and then tries to rationalize it.  She professes her love for pills and how they distort reality.  She even shares some of hers with him.  And that’s why we have a fictional musical guest this week. 

Danny finally decides to check up on Matt and Matt confesses that he and Harriet broke up at the banquet.  Matt then goes off to talk to Harriet, and possibly confess his love for her, only to find her and Luke laughing in her dressing room.  Luke takes off, allowing Matt and Harriet to share an awkward moment. 

Matt finally gets flustered that no one remembers Tim, who always wore a blue shirt and khakis.  How could anyone forget him?  Andy asks Matt to point him out in the 1999 writing team photo.  Matt looks at the photo, sees himself dressed in a blue shirt and white khakis, and realizes that pill do mess with reality.  Tim Batale was Matt Albie.  Whoa. 

Matt retires to his office to pop some more pills. 

Other things that happen in this episode; Jordan and Danny flirt, but try to keep their relationships on the DL.  Also, Jordan once again catches Hallie trying to be slick and warns her about it.  

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