Monday, September 16, 2013

Gladiators in suits

So, I didn't want to wait this long to post something, but I was distracted. I know, it's usually my excuse, but this time it truly was the biggest distraction ever. A show called Scandal.
I surprised myself when I didn't start watching this show when it came out, since I'm known to bow down to the brilliant feet of Shonda Rhimes (Grey's Anatomy and Private Practice creator) but for some reason, initially, the premise didn't intrigue me enough. It premiered at a bad time (April of 2011) and I just missed it.

Then when all the buzz started to happen during its winter finale of the second season and then even more throughout the spring, I knew this would be a show I would like. And yet, I was afraid to start watching. I was afraid my expectations might be too high. And honestly, I thought if I took on another show I would start forgetting what ones I did watch.

Then it hit me. True Blood is officially calling it quits next season. Dexter leaving me in this week. Breaking Bad in two weeks (yes, I realize I started watching this in July, but still). Fringe and 30 Rock left me this past January. I realized I needed a new show (yes, to add to the 18 others I watch).
And were my expectations met and exceeded. Watch this show everyone. Do it. Go, it's on Netflix. This is what TV is all about. It won't be rolling in the Emmys like a Mad Men, but man is it fun. (NOTE: Kerry Washington is nominated – who, if she wins, could be the first female black leading actress in a drama to win an Emmy. Also, it also just scored a best guest actor award for Dan Bucantinksy. END NOTE). No, it's not this intense deep down-to-the-core analyzing who these people are, like Breaking Bad is. No, it's just a downright, fun, juicy show. The best comparison I have is Revenge, but less campy.

My mother started watching the show when it first came out and really enjoyed it. She watched the first whole season, but was unable to return. Why? The gross, scumbag, nasty president.

For those of you who have never heard of Scandal, the premise is this: Olivia Pope (Washington) is a "fixer." She takes public figures (senators, governors, rich people) who get themselves into trouble (have affairs, accidentally kill people, have affairs) and help them fix their issue. We learn she had a very deep (and sexual) relationship with the current U.S. president. As the season progresses, we learn she was the White House director of communications, until the affair with good ole Mr. President got to be too much and resigned, starting her own firm.

So, the show follows her team of "gladiators in suits" as they fix things. It's a mixture of a procedural and then an over arching storyline throughout the season. The main one being her relationship with POTUS. So, my mother stopped watching because she couldn't handle watching the president have an affair, be stupid and do it while his wife clearly knows what is going on (for the record, the wife is a nasty piece of work).

I agree with my mother, the majority of the time I can't handle him. But as the president (Tony Goldwyn) drove her away, Olivia Pope kept me around. Washington makes the most ridiculous storyline believable. The key to a leading lady. I love this character. Sometimes I want to slap her and tell her to stop going to the White House to see the scumbag, it only makes it worse. Then 10 minutes later I'm screaming that she needs to marry him and be First Lady! That is all, easily, Washington's doing. She is a master at making me want to strangle her but believing everything she is saying.
I am, 100 percent, behind her winning the Emmy. Granted, I want pretty much every woman who is nominated to win, except for maybe Vera Farmiga, but only because I don't watch that show. My guess is Claire Danes wins again, especially if she submitted the interrogation episode for her Emmy pic, because that episode is golden. Though, many experts are saying Washington has a chance. I love this year of unpredictability.

Who cares who wins, honestly, because it's great to see these powerful, bad ass woman on TV. I'm not referring to Danes' character (who always looks like she's about to cry), but Washington's and Robin Wright's on House of Cards, and Elisabeth Moss on Mad Men and Connie Britton on Nashville. All have power, money and leverage. It's fun to watch women be awesome.
So, if you don't watch any of the nominated women for this year's Emmys, I suggest you pick one. More so, I suggest you pick Scandal. Especially, if you're not looking for complicated plot, but just straight up political and relationship backstabbing (kind of like House of Cards, but more fun).

Here are some of my other notes:
1. J.K.! J.K.! J.K.! J.K.! J.K.! That's right, my girl, the one and only, the most famous, the most talented, the rock star of all authors is writing a screenplay. And not just any screenplay. No, she's basically writing a prequel to Harry Potter. OK, prequel is wrong. It's like a side story. From her book Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, similar to Quidditch Through the Ages one she wrote. Can you tell I'm excited?
2. TINA! TINA! TINA! TINA! TINA! It's been a good couple weeks for me. It was announced she will host the premiere of SNL on Sept. 28. She's going to whip all those newbies into shape for the new season. Can you tell I'm really, really excited about things?
3. As a note, I plan to live tweet the Emmys this year (I know exciting right?!) So this is my promotion for all of you to follow me so you can find out what I think since you can't all watch with me (I know, try not to shed any tears). But follow me @sammiekiesel and it'll be like you're sitting right next to me! (Also, if you don't even have a Twitter, get one.)

And with that I say... Live long and prosper.

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