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Wednesday Night Television-Obama V. Glee

September 9, 2009

First things first.  The new season of television has come upon us, so I may on occasion digress into commentary on TV.  It won’t be often, but it’s starting tonight.

I’m torn on the program that stole the spotlight tonight.

I started by watching Obama’s speech on health care and was very happy.  Admittedly an Obamaphile, I was happy to see him come into the conversation as the sort of rational mature character.  He took some members of Congress to task in a way that was both above the fray and very clear to anyone following the debate (Michelle Bachmann and Chuck Grassley, what?).  Lines that used words like “bickering” and calling the disingenuous debate a “game,” he seemed like the teacher coming in and telling the class to shape up.  He didn’t go as deep as the wonkiest among us might have hoped, but then again, he wasn’t speaking to the wonkiest among us.  He gave a really solid speech that was logical and reassuring for the middle 30% (or 10%?) of voters who are actually open-minded enough to listen to each side.  If nothing else, I think this speech was soothing for many who have been riled up.

On the other hand…

Glee blew my mind.  The dialogue was far funnier than the first episode.  The music wasn’t QUITE as good as the first episode (though, what can honestly beat Journey?).  So far Jane Lynch steals the show on the comedic front and Lea Michele on the musical front.  The key is that Glee’s musical numbers remain effortless and not forced.  If the music seems too much like it’s lip-syncing to studio versions, it will lose the silly/genuine nature.  Gold digger was a bit less natural than “Don’t Stop Believin’.”

So who won–Obama or the cast of Glee?  Apples and Oranges, for me.  Which did you prefer?

Also worth noting–Fox did not air Obama’s speech in DC (not sure about other markets).  Apparently “So You Think You Can Dance” is more relevant than Obama’s first address on specifics around health reform.  Note to Rupert Murdoch’s Fox employees, I hope you feel the same way when you face a serious illness and there is no public option or cost containment to ensure you get comprehensive, coordinated and effective care.

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