The other night, I decided I should finally watch the Netflix movies that arrived in my mailbox last Wednesday: the entire mini-series/movie Angels in America, which was written by Tony Kushner and was based on his Tony Award-winning play of the same name.
Angels in America is an amazing thing to see, and I’d love to see it on the stage, even though it isn’t perfect—the main angel’s dialogue is a bit tedious and over-the-top, especially when she says “I, I, I” over and over. There are a few other things that bug me, but anyway, not the point, so moving on! The acting is superb, and I especially love watching Meryl Streep and Al Pacino. The lead men, Justin Kirk (who plays Prior) and Ben Shenkman III (who plays Louis), are great too, especially in the scene in which AIDS-infected Prior is crawling through the hall in the middle of the night, gasping and calling Louis’ name. It’s a very believable scene, very touching. Especially the last few seconds of the scene, when Louis finds blood on Prior and slams himself against the wall with a gag and a heart-wrenching “Oh God!” His aversion to death and sickness is quite evident here, and the actor does a wonderful job expressing it.
Okay, so…confession time: I didn’t know the names of the main actors—well, let’s just say the men who play Prior and Louis, since it’s such an ensemble effort—so I had to go to IMDB.com and look them up. Maybe it’s not much of a confession. Anyway, in doing this, I realized that Justin Kirk was on one of the most amazing episodes of one of the best shows that has ever aired. What a small world this is! I’m talking about the Jack & Bobby episode “Under the Influence.” I got excited when I read this and rushed off to find the episode in my video collection and see if I could spot him. What I found was kind of mind-blowing. His role on the show is deeper and more significant than I could have imagined. He plays President Robert McAllister’s oldest son in the flashforward for that episode. And it’s a powerful flashforward, not to mention episode. As proud as I was of the show, I’m even prouder now to say that Justin Kirk—who is so fantastic in Angels in America, which itself is an influential and important piece of work—was also on a powerhouse episode of one of my favorite shows of all time.
Furthermore, I was again excited to see that Justin Kirk was also in “Enjoy the Ride,” a fourth season episode of Everwood, which ties with Jack & Bobby as my favorite show ever—well, if I were forced to pick favorites, that is, and it’s clear that, even when I try, I still can’t do it. I just love too many shows! So my favorite show is actually about ten different shows. Maybe I’m exaggerating. But if all this, and the following sentence, tells you anything about me, then woohoo, I’ve done my job: I’m actually so pathetic and anal retentive that I have a “master show list” in Excel, with everything I’ve ever watched, that I can remember, even shows from childhood, and all the “grown up shows” are arranged in tiers. There are thirty-two shows in my top tier. No joke.
And it’s in need of an update. I foresee a growing top tier in the 2009-2010 season, especially with FlashForward in the mix!
P.S. I realized while scanning the episode for Justin Kirk’s scenes that I don’t remember this episode of Jack & Bobby! I know the aftermath very well, and I know what leads up to it, but I don’t remember this particular episode. I’m going to remedy that right now by watching/re-watching it. I remember the Everwood episode, though, but I might watch it just to see how Justin Kirk does on it, since I didn’t know who he was the first time I watched it.
P.P.S. Yeah, I definitely hadn’t seen that episode. I don’t know why I never went back and watched it until now. I guess I just forgot.