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Sorkin Leaving West Wing (1 Viewer)

Roberto Carlo

Second Unit
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Apr 14, 2002
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What does this portend for the future of the show?

http://www.variety.com/VR770000927.htm[/url]

[The]Emmy-winning scribe has informed Warner Bros. TV and NBC that this will be his final season with "The West Wing." He is expected to announce his decision this afternoon.
 

Jaime J Nubes

Auditioning
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Mar 12, 2003
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Now that's stunning news!! A creator being pushed off his own show. Even though it's not the first time something like this happened, this has to really bite.
 

Ken Chan

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It's not clear that he's being pushed. He might be burned out, or tired of dealing with the suits that want to jazz up the show with silly stuff, or whatever.

//Ken
 

Karl_Luph

Supporting Actor
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I was under the impression that the series had lost alot of appeal and viewership had dropped significantly. I don't know anybody who watches it.
 

Henry Gale

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I watch it, but without Aaron Sorkin and Thomas Schlamme I don't have much optimism about its future.
 

Roberto Carlo

Second Unit
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Apr 14, 2002
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The Washington Post had more on the story. This excerpt is very telling:

"He's always been a gigantic pain," one industry exec told The TV Column. "But they were okay with him so long as the ratings stayed up."
Maybe Rob Lowe wasn't so dumb after all.
 

Rich Malloy

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I was under the impression that the series had lost alot of appeal and viewership had dropped significantly. I don't know anybody who watches it.
Maybe so, but it's been as good as ever this year. Better than last season, even.

In fact, it's a great method for washing away the bad taste left over from the absurdities, inaccuracies and downright stupidity of that other "white house" show, "24", a program my wife insists upon watching, even as she rolls her eyes and jeers at the ridiculousness of it all.
 

Angelo.M

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I'd all but given up on WW after the ridiculous 'lost in America' episode early this season, but I think they're back on track. This week's episode was the best I've seen in a long time. Frankly, I'll stick with it through this change; who knows? Seinfeld survived (in not quite the same shape) after Larry David's departure. Yeah, this isn't quite the same thing, but it might be interesting.
 

KerryK

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Mar 3, 2003
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This week's episode was so strong it reminded me why I stopped disliking the show in the first place: I loved watching them analyze how to deal with events. I also enjoyed the "political mystery" aspect of the show - not knowing if a bill will pass or who's messing around who's back.

The show's been stronger since the introduction of Will Bailey, but this week was the best in a long time. I also thought Matthew Perry was great.
 

Rich Malloy

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The show's been stronger since the introduction of Will Bailey
Love that character, and especially his interactions with Toby and his all-chickadee intern staff! I was worried about a possible "Rob Lowe void", but this cat who plays Bailey is hilarious. Glad you brought him up; he deserves no small amount of acclaim for his performance.
 

Chad R

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In a discussion just this week with my manager about the possibilities of getting on a series writing staff she schooled me on the realities of series TV. The staff of this show sit in a room and come up with tons of ideas and then work it into a show and then the Exec Producer either gives credit to one or takes it himself, and she specifically mentioned 'The West Wing' as one where Aaron Sorkin takes credit for all of the work, a trend increasingly more common these days. I couldn't wrap my brain around that, but I did have to stop and think, could Sorkin and David E. Kelley really write 1320 pages a year? And in Kelley's case times up to 3 shows?

I don't see this as being a death knell for the show. It will continue on with only a slight shift like many of the show before it.
 

Angelo.M

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I agree vis-a-vis Will Bailey and Matthew Perry. I'd love to see Oliver Platt reprise his role sometime soon as well.
 

Ken Chan

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Aaron Sorkin takes credit for all of the work
Literal on-screen credit? The credits certainly list him as writing almost all the teleplays himself, but the stories are often credited to other people.

If part of the reason the suits are upset is that the show is late, that would certainly make sense if he is writing the words himself.

With episodes of WW and Sports Night written by others, there's something a bit off; it won't be the same.

//Ken
 

Rob T

Screenwriter
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Aug 26, 2001
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I couldn't wrap my brain around that, but I did have to stop and think, could Sorkin and David E. Kelley really write 1320 pages a year?
JMS wrote most of the scripts for Babylon 5 himself so it's possible. :)
he was severly burnt out by the beginning of season 5 though.
 

MikeAlletto

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Mar 11, 2000
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I really like Matthew Perry on West Wing, but I doubt he'll last. His character is setup just to be a part time thing, even though Perry does a really suprisingly good job with it. Too bad the in show election wasn't the end of this season. The could have had Bartlett lose and ended the show on a high note, but oh no. Like every single other good show out there they are going to milk it for all its worth, it'll get really bad and then they'll cancel it blaming it on poor ratings. Has there ever been a show that was still really good when they pulled the plug?
 

RobertW

Supporting Actor
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Feb 27, 2000
Messages
719
china beach was one of my favorite shows, and i think its fourth season was the best one they ever did. they would flash back and forth from the characters in present day and back in viretnam, showing how the events they experienced then were still affecting them now. and then it was cancelled. of course, it never was a huge ratings success.
 

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