Better Late than Never: 10 Random Thoughts on Studio 60 Episode 16

Credit: NBC

Life happened last week. So today, you’re getting an extra special bonus post so we can stay on track for the rest of the episodes left for this Better Late Than Never series. This means that instead of getting three posts this week, you’re going to get four! I am hard at work on getting episode 16 ready to post, but for now, we’re going to focus on episode 15 entitled “4 a.m. Miracle.” “4 a.m Miracle” had the horrible misfortune of following “The Friday Night Slaughter,” which was a technical and narrative marvel and probably one of my most favorite episodes of the season thus far. Am I saying it’s a bad thing? Hmm, a little, because this episode was both boring and breezy. Not only that, but I don’t remember much from the episode and I think that’s saying something.

Without further ado, here are my ten thoughts for the episode, followed, as usual by a mini-review. Enjoy!

  1. “I’ll go home when you go home.” Every time I hear that line, I think of Margaret Hooper and Leo McGarry. I was wondering when that was going to happen and it finally did. I can see the parallels between Margaret and Suzanne. Matt and Leo not so much. Though they are starting to form a little bit. 
  2. Matt talking about executives with heels and glasses and then that exact prototype comes waltzing into his office. I also just want to point out that I have this theory that every show Sorkin has ever done. Every movie too, all exist in the same world. Their connecting thread? The law firm Gage Whitney. 
  3. “I know that’s not the point. The first day of work, I said, ‘you and Harriet. Is it going to be a problem?’ You said, ‘No, Danny, no. It’s not gonna be a problem.’” “Did I say it in the same creepy little voice you just used?” “Can I help you at all?” “No, thank you.” Have I said recently how much I adore Perry and Whitford’s comedic timing? No? Well, I love it. I think it’s great. 
  4. Danny is obviously not above a challenge and I adore that about him. He’ll do anything to prove that he’s capable and that Jordan made the right choice with him and their relationship. It’s endearing and sweet, but also a little bit reckless. I still love it, though. I love it. I love him. I love him and Jordan together and I’m glad they’re having a kid together because they’re precious. 
  5. There’s Mary Tate getting to the bottom of what’s been going on with Matt all because she did some research and is, obviously, smarter than our boys are. I like her already. Though this whole thing about a sexual harassment suit feels off-kilter for a show like this. It’s Sorkin’s strength, don’t get me wrong, but it feels out of character for Studio 60
  6. Danny, honey, muffling your baby crying with a blanket is not something you are supposed to do. Not by a long shot. Also, your rocking of the kid leaves little to be desired. But I have to say that Whitford with a baby is super cute. Help. 
  7. Okay, wow, yeah, Luke is a great bundle of support. How kind of him. Now I see why Matt doesn’t like him. To be honest, I’m surprised that Harriet likes him because he is the exact opposite of Matt, regardless of what she thinks or says. 
  8. They beheaded the baby doll. Oh my god, I can’t believe that they beheaded the baby doll. Jordan is going to freak out. Danny is already freaking out. This is hilarious. 
  9. Why do I get the feeling that they messed with that baby doll and everything is going to be so messed up if they plug it into the computer? Oh, nope. No, that’s even better. Props turned it into a jack in the box baby with googly eyes that pop out of its skull. That’s even creepier but it’s also hysterical and exactly what props would do to mess with their executive producer. 
  10. Well, that ending came out of nowhere and kicked me in the stomach. Ouch.

As much as I enjoyed getting to see more Danny and Jordan being all lovey-dovey and being the most adorable couple on the show at the moment, I feel that this episode following Matt’s breakdown was a disservice to the show and the episode. This was a generic episode with few laughs, but I will say that there was some character building with Danny and maybe a little bit with Simon. Other than that, though, I wasn’t impressed.

We get Harriet’s emotional reaction post the Catholic dinner and it’s obvious that she’s having issues breaking away from Matt as well. She feels guilty about her choices and still feels the same emotions without Matt as she felt with Matt in the picture. To me, that obviously means that Harriet clearly still loves Matt even though she wants to let him go so they can go their separate ways. Of course, it doesn’t work because Luke sees right through it. In front of everyone on the film set where Harriet is filming her next movie, she and Luke have a fight. It’s the death knell for their relationship, which, quite frankly, I’m glad about.

Luke’s true colors on the film set were shown in vivid display. He just doesn’t care for Harriet the way Matt cares about Harriet. Matt cares about Harriet’s emotions. He listens to them and responds to them. He does so in a way that, on the outside, might not seem “correct,” but at least he cares and people can see that. Whereas with Luke, he just doesn’t care. He says he doesn’t care and he says so straight to Harriet’s face. Not only that, he treats Harriet like a dog. Matt would never do that. Does he trip over his words and unconsciously offend her? Yes, but there’s so much more to Matt than meets the eye. Luke is in it for one thing and doesn’t care about the emotional stuff.

Other than that, I don’t remember much from this episode other than the fact that Danny’s prop guy plays a prank on Danny which leads to a rather terrifying jack in the box baby doll. I never laughed so hard than when that happened. But basically, Danny and Jordan are going to be good parents. That’s all we need to know and that’s all we learned from them in this episode.

As I mentioned before, this episode was breezy and not very memorable. Not only that, but it also featured an out of the blue court case which feels out of place for the show. I know Jack and Wilson are fighting the FCC, but that makes sense. A court case where a fired writer is suing the studio…doesn’t make sense. I know it happens but as I mentioned above, it feels out of place. I feel like the lawyer, Mary Tate, was brought in to just be Matt’s new fling, but that’s thrown out the window when Harriet comes back to Matt in the emotional ending to the episode. Also, whatever did happen with the FCC? Did we just lose a plot thread? Possibly. It’s not unheard of with Sorkin.

Shelby Arnold
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