I still idyllically watch the West Wing now and again.
Maybe just an episode here and there. Though not that long ago, we rewatched the entire final season, which was the entire election cycle of Matt Santos (Jimmy Smits) and Arnie Vinnick (Alan Alda).
The show is somewhat of a tonic for me in terms of political ideation. I know politics was never like this, and never will be - certainly not since Bush v Gore and going forward - but a boy can dream.
If anything, you have to believe VEEP was way more accurate than the West Wing ever could have been. Never once did Toby Zigler ever utter the word 'cuntgate'.......and I believe that was a failing on Toby's part.
So I was semi-looking forward to a West Wing "reunion" show on HBO.
In this year(?) of Covid - we've been subjected to a lot of failed reunion shows that were meant to make people feel better, but I'm guessing made them feel more distressed at how badly they were pulled off - or weren't, which is a more accurate description.
But this would not be a reunion as of such, but a play version of an episode called "Hartsfield Landing", in which a small town in New Hampshire can start voting at midnight, and all of their 40 residents are done voting by 12:07.
In this scenario, they claim the town has accurately predicted the winner of the election since the 1800s.
In reality, Hart's Location, NH does vote this way, but probably not the truth about the winner info, though it does hold true back to 1992 - which is the farthest info I can find in terms of politics.
I remembered the episode vaguely and while it was extremely well done, with all but two of the show's characters appearing in the play version, the rationale for choosing this episode to recreate is wishy washy. Yes, it deals with voting - which I get - but it clearly has to be a primary, not a general election, though they don't readily make that clear.
The cast does well. All the original cast/characters appear save John Spence, who died in the last season of the series. His secretary, Margaret appears in the episode of the show, but not in the play I mean even the minor folks are there - including the press pool, they only have three, but you recognize them. I assume they might have had more, but due to covid.......no.
The impetus for this rendering was to get out the vote........which would have been nice.......a month ago.
The cast and crew were there to support When We All Vote, a non-partisan, non-profit, who looks to increase voting in each election, but really looking to engage the younger and disenfranchised populations (read: minorities).
My problem is, at least 30 states voter registration dates had passed before the show aired. If they truly wanted to engaged, they'd have aired this while all 50 states were still in play.
Of course, another problem is that these would-be targeted populations most likely don't have HBO Max, and most likely weren't going to watch an older, mostly white cast (though they did have Leo's part played by Sterling K Brown - who did so-so at best).
And while the organization is non-partisan, the show's guest spots, who interspersed the play, were clearly not. Obviously, this year, I'm not bi-partisan, but yet it kind of irked me that the show, supporting an organization that allegedly is, didn't reflect that. No candidates were named, but issues were.
Still, it was nice to see the band back together. If it weren't for the voice, I'm not sure I would have recognized Ainsley Hayes, and it was great to see Joey Lucas.
But yet, use the When We All Vote information about your election day. It's important.........to say the least.
Song by: Moby