"Madame, bear in mind That princes govern all things--save the wind." -Victor Hugo, The Infanta's Rose

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Musings of an entry-level life form

I've always enjoyed watching Boston Legal, for many reasons; the characters (especially William Shatner as Denny Crane) are quirky and memorable, I love seeing the exterior shots of the Boston area where I grew up, and the writing is in-fucking-credible. David E. Kelly loves to rip story lines right from the headlines, and isn't afraid to skewer the likes of Big Tobacco or the pharmaceutical industry, or take on other ethical challenges like assisted suicide or neglect of military veterans -- all in a very "theater of the absurd" sort of way.

I also like that the show often espouses an unapologetically liberal point of view, and this week's episode was a classic: it featured former Saturday Night Live star Cheri Oteri as a woman fired by her boss for voting for John McCain -- not, as her boss claimed, due to her political views, but because this fact demonstrated that she was an idiot and therefore too stupid to work for him. (As you might imagine, this plot has rankled the living shit out of the right, which only makes me enjoy it more.)

In his presentation to the judge, James Spader as attorney Alan Shore makes the following argument (emphasis added):
The unassailable right to vote is the core principle of any democracy. And people have the right to cast their ballot for whomever they want– for good reasons or for bad reasons or for no reason at all. Let’s face it, your honor, we as a nation are horribly uninformed when it comes to politics ... today our news programs consist solely of sensational headlines and sound bites. People forgo newspapers for the internet, where instead of relying on credentialed journalists, they turn to these bloggers – sort of entry-level life-forms that intellectually have yet to emerge from the primordial ooze. This is how we’ve gotten the elected officials we’ve gotten.

I think I ... er ... kinda like that.

As you may know, this is the show's fifth and last season, and in fact production on the big two-hour finale was just completed last week, followed by a bittersweet wrap party Saturday night at LA's Cicada Restaurant. (Oh, to have been a fly on that wall.) I'll miss the show, but just like my other favorite legal drama "Law And Order", I'm sure it will be around in reruns for quite a while still. Let me close with a tribute to some of the show's best moments, set to a Matchbox Twenty soundtrack.

Then I'm going to go have a cigar and a scotch on the patio, and climb back into the primordial ooze.

PS: If anyone's keeping score, this entry is the 500th post since I began the blog just over three years ago. Yay me!


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