Brothers and Sisters

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Wasting away again in Arti-ritaville

McCallister HQ. The chief of staff is handing out campaign-trail assignments, and he lumps Kitty with "the videography," which Kitty doesn't want to do. The chief of staff explains for the benefit of the audience what the videography involves -- testimonials from McCallister's hometown friends and family, puff-piece-y stuff -- and calls it "a cakewalk," and Kitty knows that, which is why she doesn't need to supervise it. The CoS points out that someone needs to ask the questions off-camera; Kitty suggests getting someone else with a higher profile: "A... celebrity, maybe." "We're Republicans. Our one celebrity's busy running California," the CoS cracks, and bustles off. ... Okay, I'll just complain about this now so that I can refer to it in shorthand in the future, but a line like that is, in a nutshell, what irks me about the portrayal of conservatives on Brothers & Sisters. Yeah, it's a nice snappy comeback, but it's not like Rush Limbaugh isn't a celebrity, or Ann Coulter, and anyway, a more accurate line would have gone something like, "We're Republicans. We're neither as self-deprecating nor as sympathetically centrist as this show would have you believe." I mean, I understand why the show paints them the way it does; the writers want us to like the Republican characters, and they sense that, if they make those characters too realistically hard-line, we won't. It's like when we first meet McCallister, and he opposes stem-cell research -- but only because it's a states-rights issue. It's a totally safe reason that doesn't touch on the ethical arguments, and like I said, I see why they do it this way; the show isn't about politics, and I for one don't need any more GOP realism than I get in real life on a daily basis. But if you bother putting Republicans on the show at all, make them actual Republicans. Otherwise, it's fake, and if it's fake, we don't believe what you tell us is at stake for the characters. The Fauxpublican values aren't a huge negative or anything, but it does bug me.

Anyway, cut from Kitty making a "... not!" face to Kitty complaining to Sarah on the phone about having to go to Castroville, which is apparently the Senator's home town. Sarah Googles the town; a number of forumites pointed out that she should probably have heard of it, given that she's in the fruit business and it's -- as she tells us shortly -- the artichoke capital of the world, but whatever. Kitty, eating leftovers in the kitchen, whines that she can't believe she has to spend the weekend doing puff pieces on her "mean boyfriend" who she's having a fight with, who she apparently shouldn't be having a fight with because he's running for president, "like that's some big... deal, or something." Very Ally inflection there. "Did you get all that out?" Sarah wonders dryly. "Not even close," Kitty grumps. Sarah invites herself along to Castroville for a girl-bonding road trip; Kitty reminds her that she's "supposed to be working," and based on what we've seen of Road-Trip Sarah prior to this episode, trying to nip this in the bud is not a bad idea (well, for Kitty -- viewers know that Road-Trip Sarah is freakin' awesome), but Sarah mentions a spa where they can get artichoke facials, and adds that if she doesn't get away from her family for a couple of days, they'll end up "on the evening news." Kitty gives in, hangs up, and grouses to herself through a mouthful of pasta (which, I notice, is green -- hi, prop master and craft services!).

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Brothers and Sisters

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