Well, not *totally*. In no particular order, here are 10 RUBBISH things about it, which my latest rewatch has thrown up… (Spoilers ahead.)
- Aside from a couple of examples, the journalists in it are all sycophantic, naïve and easily fobbed-off.
- It gets the British idiom hopelessly fuddled at times. Aside from the usual confusion over England/Great Britain/the UK, the British Ambassador keeps referring to himself as representing ‘Her Royal Majesty’. (There’s also the preposterous idea that the Daily Mirror would pay thousands of dollars for a picture of a White House staffer standing next to a call girl. Like they’d care!)
- The episode where CJ goes home to Ohio is very dull.
- The episode where CJ is followed by a documentary camera crew is terribly hackneyed. It also features loads of characters presented as regulars who we never see at any other time.
- How Toby is treated in the final year or two is awful. Not only what they have him do, but also how he’s then absent from most of the final season.
- Amy Gardiner really annoys me. Her doe-eyed arrogance makes me reach for the fast-forward button.
- The notion that anyone would consider Leo – an ex-drug addict and alcoholic, who’s tied to the last president and has just had a heart attack – as a Vice President nominee is laughable.
- The 9/11 episode. Well intentioned, sure. But so, so patronising. In fact, almost everything to do with real-world Middle East countries is just horrendous. The story that bridges seasons five and six sees characters go to Gaza then solve the Israeli/Palestinian crisis over a long weekend. Yuck.
- Great characters routinely get dropped to semi-regular status or forgotten about all together: Laurie, Gina Toscano, Lionel Tribbey, Will Bailey, Bob Russell, Charlie, Joe Quincy, Mallory, Elsie Snuffin…
- Joey Lucas should have been promoted to the regular cast as soon as she appeared.
See, I didn’t even MENTION Mandy!