Idol Chatter

While I understand why so many critics gush about the talent of writer/producer Aaron Sorkin, last night’s episode of “Studio 60” was a blatant reminder to me that this show is quite possibly more about Sorkin working out his personal issues than it is about examining a culture war.

In the second part of a two-part storyline that has centered around Harriet’s comments to the media about gay marriage, Harriet is suddenly asked by exec Jordan McDeere to cancel some singing engagements with a fictitious conservative Christian group entitled “Women United” because of the media firestorm that will ensue. Harriet is ambivalent about such a decision because she knows that there are many young girls who admire her as one of the few not-so-crazy Christians in the Hollywood limelight and who also attend these events.

What is interesting to me about this storyline is the behind-the scenes cause for this episode. Once again, Sorkin has shamelessly exploited his ex-girlfriend–Broadway diva and outspoken Christian celeb Kristin Chenoweth–by lifting events out of her life and putting them on the air, albeit with his own snarky twist.

Last fall Chenoweth was to sing at a series of conferences sponsored by an conservative Christian organization called “Women of Faith.” Her concerts were canceled after Chenoweth made comments in the media regarding gays. (For the record, Chenoweth is more outspoken about gay rights than Harriet is in the show.) In fact, Chenoweth even commented in a recent interview–jokingly it seems–that she is beginning to wonder when she will start getting some money from the show as compensation for the use of her likeness.

Well, Kristin, all I can say is, let’s wait and see how long it takes before that comment makes it into a future “Studio 60” episode.

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