The Hot List
Every week, we’ll jot down our thoughts - list form - on a variety of topics. Call it our version of Letterman’s Top 10 countdown. Since we have a new president trying to make his mark, we of course have the perfect starting point!
Top 10 TV/Movie Presidents
10. President Tom Beck (Morgan Freeman) - Deep Impact: Quite frankly, any list that Morgan Freeman qualifies for, you have to put him in the Top 10. It’s a rule.
9.President Bill Mitchell (Kevin Kline) - Dave: Kline gets to play a look-alike who comes in and saves America. What more can you ask for from a president?
8.President Mackenzie Allen (Geena Davis) - Commander-in-Chief: Forget Sarah or Hillary, President Allen got to the Oval Office first. Though let’s hope the next one in is a bit more successful.
7. President Thomas J. Whitmore (Bill Pullman) - Independence Day: The man hopped in a fighter jet and took on the alien war ship? Has any sitting president in history done as much? I didn’t think so.
6. President Robert “Bob” Fowler (James Cromwell) - The Sum Of All Fears: He lived through a nuclear blast and was ready to blow Russia right off the map. I like a President with guts.
5.President Charles Logan (Gregory Itzin) - 24: You’ve got to have a no-good, sneaky, contriving, weasel as President every once in a while. I mean, we do want Hollywood to resemble real-life every now and then.
4. President James Marshall (Harrison Ford) - Air Force One: He was pretty handy inside an airplane filled with terrorists.
3.President Andrew Shepherd (Michael Douglas) - The American President: He was smart, funny and he bagged a hot girl (Annette Benning). Plus, his final speech of the movie was inspiring -- even if he was a liberal. 2.President David Palmer (Dennis Haysbert) - 24: If you had to draw up a President of the United States, David Palmer would be the mold you would want to use. Tough, strong, no-nonsense. We would vote for him today -- if he would just run.
1. President Josiah “Jed” Bartlett (Martin Sheen) - The West Wing: Probably the smartest President to grace the TV screen, President Bartlett was John F. Kennedy and Ronald Reagan rolled into one. He was a conservative Democrat who truly wanted what was best for the country. And he loved football -- which just made him all the better chief executive.
Video of the Week
How did we miss that?
Every year we miss out on some great TV. Either we never jumped in on a show at its beginnings or we simply weren’t alerted that a show was great -- there’s only so many hours in the day for aimlessly slouching on the recliner with absolutely nothing to do but watch really worthless television (something like 22 hours according to the last study). But the TV gods got smart -- they invented DVDs and downloadable programming! Life can’t get much better. We’ve already got our first nominee for GREATEST MISSED SHOW EVER.
After mushroom clouds appear on the horizon, fear of the unknown propels Jericho into social, psychological and physical mayhem when all communication and power is shut down. The town starts to come apart at the seams as terror, anger and confusion bring out the very worst in some residents. Jake Green, the prodigal son of the town's mayor, becomes a reluctant hero when a school bus crashes as a result of the explosion.
Wait a minute! This show has Ashley Scott in it and I missed it? Something is terribly wrong with the Echo Castle babe-meter. Wow. I need to check the batteries on that thing.
Right off the bat, we meet the Jericho hero, the much-maligned Jake Green (played by Skeet Ulrich), the bad-boy son of Jericho mayor Johnston Green (played by one of Echo World’s favorites, Gerald McRaney -- and surprisingly the former “Simon & Simon” star makes a pretty good mayor). Jake’s come home looking for a little green from Daddy Green (like most bad boys do) and before he can get back out of the tiny Kansas hamlet, a nuclear explosion appears on the horizon. Jake makes his way back to Jericho after wrecking his car and chaos ensues.
The show (which only lasted two seasons) then goes on a roller coaster ride of the unknown, from Jericho residents trying to find out exactly what happened to neighboring communities invading our favorite small town to a split nation and Army control. We even have the evil corporation that tries to take control (Jericho’s version of Halliburton?).
The casting is quite good, with the Green family leading the way, including Jake’s brother Eric and mom Gail, the mysterious Hawkins (played quite well by Lennie James), Emily (the wonderful Ms. Scott), good farm boy Stanley Richmond and a cast of evil -types. Season 2 even brings in Esai Morales, which just brings more fun to the show!
Surprisingly, there are enough twists and turns to keep the story interesting - especially when it comes to Hawkins and what exactly his role in the whole nuclear-bombs-go-off-in-America hiccup.
**** Spoiler Alert ****
In the end, the good guys come out ahead. And, of course, Texas plays a crucial role! WAY TO REPRESENT LONE STAR STATE!
**** End Spoiler Alert ****
All in all this is a fun show. It’s not one you can jump into in the middle of the season, so watch it online here (Jericho) or go buy the dvds. It’s well worth your time.
Lady Fantastic’s Minion Musings
Choices. Everyone has to make them. Mustard or mayo? Paper or plastic? Deal or no deal? Work or television? Well, I may not know your condiment preference, and I'm certainly not going to mess up your opportunity to win a million dollars, but if there's one thing I can do, it's help you decide between being productive, and being entertained. I'm Lady Fantastic, and I watch a lot of TV. Now, some of you may be wondering, "Lady Fantastic, aren't you in college? Shouldn't you be doing calculus, writing your thesis, learning to become a functioning member of society and/or sleeping?" and my answers to you are simple: I can't do math to save my life, my thesis isn't due for another year, I will NEVER be a functioning member of society, and I can sleep when I'm old. My goal here is simple: watch TV, write about TV, and hopefully distract you from the real world for just a little bit. I'll be sharing with you my incredible love for my personal favorite, The Office, some thoughts on Grey's Anatomy and Desperate Housewives for those of you who enjoy your dramas with a little spice, and come January, I'll be talking about the best show you aren't watching-- Friday Night Lights. Who knows, maybe I'll even throw in some movie musings, some retro reviewing, some pop-culture pondering, and a little American Idol... if you're lucky. We all have choices to make in life, because sadly, different shows are on in the same time slots. Have no fear, Lady Fantastic's here.
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I-- I took the one with more channels.