The Madame (Television Thoughts, Madame Secretary)

Madam-Secretary_sI guess I never wrote anything about “Madam Secretary” last season despite it being one of my favorite shows right now. I think it’s because I don’t really watch it “in real time.” I usually binge-watch a couple of episodes of it. But now that I have decided that i will be cutting my cable service,  I have been catching up on all yje episodes I have recorded on my DVR, and now I am pretty much up to date. I love this show – it makes me think, and I get engaged by the characters, especially of eh title character of Elizabeth McCord, Secretary Of State of The United States, brilliantly played by  Tea Leoni. I have always been keen on her, but here I am more than convinced of how great she is – and it is pretty refreshing to see a pretty un-botoxed face in Leoni. I mean, you can actually see her change emotions through facial expressions.  So sometimes the plot points can be a bit too hyperbolic, and at times the conclusions come in too-neat packages, but it’s the acting ensemble here that gives it weight. I mean, we have two Tony Best Actress awardees in her staff: Bebe Neuwirth (who plays her Chief Of Staff) and Patina Miller (who plays her Communicatons Director)  In the beginning of last season, I thought Miller may have read too young for her part, but she has grown into it, and it kind of makes sense nowadays for a younger person to have that job, because social media is so much a part of modern day communications that the person now needs to skew younger. (On the series premiere for the second season, Neuwirth and Miller even gets to flex their musical chops by singing a musical number)  Erich Bergen (from jersey Boys) plays her personal assistant, and the character is unspokenly gay – it’s kind of interesting that no one talks about, except fleetingly and in “code” (One character describes him as “cycling to Sondheim”)   Week after week, I am engaged, even if at times the story lines mirror each other (I mean, how  many times do we need an episode about a kidnapped American?)  But all in all, it’s good entertainment, and is perfect pair programming with my other favorite show, “The Good Wife.”

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