Sports Night
Shane

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Daniel: B | 3 USERS: A
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Shane

Danny is now asking Nurse Ratched if this is a date. "It's a drink," she says. "I'll take it," he says, and they clink glasses. Then she prods him to tell her more about what would happen after he'd leave the table. Dan says, "Nothing!" a little too overzealously. "Wouldn't you shake sometimes?" Dan admits it. "And you start to sweat?" Dan says, "I thought this wasn't a therapy session," but Abby cuts him off and asks if he sometimes had to go someplace and throw up. Dan gets quiet and says "yeah." "And there's no reason to talk in the past tense, right?" says Abby. Dan probably realizes he's going to be billed for this session and may be regretting buying the drinks. Dan admits it still happens today. "Recently it's been worse, right?" Dan wants to know how she knows all this. "Danny, you have to get hip to the fact I didn't get my licence in the Virgin Islands," says Abby, and I'm sure there's a virgin joke in there somewhere but I'm so very tired. Now, after Abby has obliterated Danny, she thanks him for the drinks and says she has to go. Danny offers to take her, but she says she'll get a cab. I knew it. Dan bought the drinks. Hit-and-Run Abby leaves. Commercials.

The next day, Casey is explaining to Shane that the interview is being taped, not live, so it's okay if Shane has a coughing fit or needs to go to the bathroom, like maybe Shane has never been interviewed before. Shane claps Casey on the shoulder and says they should hook up now that Shane is in town. They sit down in chairs on the Close-Up interview set. "Hey, Jeremy," says Casey loudly. "Shane McArnold just asked me out." "He's a twit," says Jeremy into Casey's mic. Casey puts a finger to his earphone and says to Shane, "He says he's your number one fan." "Thanks!" says Shane, even giving Jeremy a cheesy thumbs-up. We hear Jeremy's voice coming into the studio, "You bet!" all enthusiastic, and Jeremy is forgiven for the whole Y2K annoyance. Then the TCs start rolling tape and the interview starts. "Shane, after eleven years with the Kansas City Royals [eleven years in Kansas City? The Vatican is wrong] ["Is this the wrong time to mention that the one famous person to come out of my hometown, Willie Wilson, played most of his career with the Royals?" -- Sars], you opted for free agency, signed with the New York Yankees. Let me be the first to say welcome to town. How do you feel?" In the control room Jeremy says, "Whoa, tough one from Casey."

But Natalie is suddenly spazzing because she's still upset about this "hell is a state" business and can't believe no one else is upset by this, and let me say, with the authority of someone schooled in fine Catholic institutions, I am more surprised that someone could be at all surprised that the Vatican might change its mind on whatever it arbitrarily decides to, unless it has to do with really important matters, such as birth control. Furthermore, I don't see this being any major revelation, since I always figured it was common understanding that hell was no more a physical place than heaven is, but Natalie is acting like she really thought if you dug a hole deep enough you would enter hell with its lakes of fire and blankets of maggots and all that stuff. Since Kim wasn't in the bar the night before, Natalie has to explain that there's no hell, which isn't even really what the Vatican said, but whatever, Natalie. "There's no hell? Cool!" says Kim. She smiles. I for one cannot wait to see what Kim does with no fear of having to pay penance for her sins. Natalie whines about the sisters who used to beat her at Our Lady of Perpetual Sorrow. "They beat you?" says Jeremy. Natalie admits that they only yelled at her. "Why?" I can take a wild guess. "So I wouldn't go to hell!" she says. Man, Catholic school apparently messed up Natalie more than it did me. Even as a kid I knew that getting into trouble for fighting or talking back or whatever didn't absolve me of my sins. I had to go to confession and say Hail Marys for that, and I found it kind of cool that no matter what I did, I could confess it and be forgiven for it, and once I even hit someone who was bugging a friend of mine, largely because I was aware we were going to confession that afternoon, which I guess was an eight-year-old's version of the same thought process that allows the Mafia to be so devoutly Catholic. Jeremy suggests that Natalie wasn't taught by the world's happiest nuns, but concedes that the "Perpetual Sorrow" ought to have been a giveaway.

Dana comes into the control room and wants to know if Jeremy is listening. "Listening to what?" he says. "The interview you're producing," says Dana. Jeremy, instead of taking the hint, laughs and says, "I'm producing the segment, my contract doesn't say anything about my having to pay attention to it." Dana says Shane said he doesn't like New York. Jeremy starts paying attention. Dana looks happy.

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