“PBS portrayal of Clinton akin to Republicans talking about Reagan. Interesting.”
Later I read Lanny Davis’ (Clinton’s special counsel) comment in The Hill.
To watch four hours of the so-called documentary on the eight years of the Clinton presidency gave me the sensation of a report about a glass of water that is 75 percent full and 25 percent empty. The PBS presentation, I am guessing, spent 75 percent of the four hours reporting on 25 percent of the story, i.e., the issue of “scandal” in the Clinton presidency, omitting the substance and policy achievements of the Clinton presidency, i.e., issues that affected the lives of most Americans and that they care about most.
I guess it depends on whose ox is being gored. My mind was changed by the time it was over. I hadn’t moved my opinion to Davises, but certainly in that direction. The longer I watched the fairer the documentary seemed.
It originally felt biased because Clinton was a better president than could be appreciated at the time.
The doc presented a lot of history I hadn’t seen including a still and film of a young Bill Clinton meeting President John Kennedy at the White House. How had that remained hidden so long?
Clinton was a flawed president. However, what seemed important while he was president seems less important now. Maybe that’s the unfortunate takeaway of politics.
When someone’s in office the opposition, with the tacit encouragement of the media, looks for weakness or failing. Those traits get amplified through reptition. However, with the luxury of perspective Clinton seems much more effective as a president–still fallible as a man.
I’ve got two hours down with another two to watch. Originally I wasn’t sure I’d have the motivation to sit through the show. Now I can’t wait to see the second half.
In my fantasy Woody was me though nothing could be farther from the truth. I saw him woo Diane Keaton in Annie Hall and Mariel Hemmingway in Manhattan and thought he was pre-living my life.
First things first. I am surprised there is a documentary about Woody Allen on TV. I am surprised he agreed. I am glad I watched.
I probably first saw Woody when he was on TV in the sixties. He was one of many comics on TV. I knew him a little. It wasn’t until Sleeper that I was hooked!
Awkward Jew from New York City. Intellectual. We are both the former. I foolishly thought I was the latter too.
In my fantasies Woody was playing me. Nothing could be farther from the truth!
I saw him woo Diane Keaton in Annie Hall and Mariel Hemmingway in Manhattan and thought he was pre-living my life. These two movies are among the most romantic ever made.
When she was in her early teens I convinced Stef to watch Annie Hall with me. She really enjoyed it. We were both surprised by that.
I was scared to mention Manhattan to her because of the content.
Allen is not without flaws and controversy. On the PBS site for the documentary one commenter wrote:
I love the American Masters Series. However I am seriously disappointed that Woody Allen is a choice. He is a pedophile. I don’t know what makes him any different than Roman Polanski. Talented yes, but a creepy man.
This documentary filled in a lot of holes in understanding where he came from. It doesn’t give instructions to become him.
Part two airs tonight on PBS. Because it’s the 21st Century both parts will be repeated forever and streamed online.
Everyone wanted to know when the story would air again? NBC was silent until Thursday.
When I wrote about Tom Brokaw’s documentary and the 7,000 people stranded in Gander, Newfoundland on September 11, 2001 I didn’t expect it to be my most read, most commented blog post of all time! It surely was.
All my commenters were touched by the outpouring of love and graciousness from these residents of an isolated community in a thinly populated province. Everyone wanted to know when the story would air again? NBC was silent until Thursday.
MSNBC will telecast “Operation Yellow Ribbon” this Saturday, 12-1 p.m. ET and Sunday, 1-2 p.m. ET, hosted by NBC News’ Tom Brokaw. Originally broadcast during NBC’s coverage of the 2010 Vancouver Winter Games, “Operation Yellow Ribbon” is the story of the town of Gander, Newfoundland where, on September 11, 2001, 38 jumbo jets carrying nearly 7,000 passengers were diverted.
I cannot recommend this beautifully shot and produced documentary more highly. If you can’t be around this weekend, make sure you record it–it’s that good.
After you watch it, please come back and let me know what you think. I suspect you’ll be as deeply affected as Helaine and I were.