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St. Claire

Sports Night

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A place to post your favorite quotes from the gang at Continental Sports Channel, and the ways we manage to sneak Sorkin-isms into real life.

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My go-to code phrase for "I don't want to talk about this at all" is "I'm just sittin' here with no provolone." Thank you, Casey.

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I should use the provolone line more; it's a good one. I actually do use "hip deep in pie" to refer to those days where life is just conspiring to make you miserable, which is why I chose it for the thread title. I toyed with "Park all covered in cheese" but figured that it wasn't quite as applicable to daily life.

I was very excited about doing well in some board game we were playing, and kept exclaiming "Shoe money tonight!" until my daughter gave an exasperated "Stop *saying* that!" in an Isaac-like tone.

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A place to talk about the show itself- who's up for a rewatch, what have the actors moved on to, the sheer pointlessness of a 0-0 tie.

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I still have a tendency to say "And there's rain at Indian Wells" when it seems like everything's about to go bad.

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"Eli's coming" is my go-to phrase for when you feel like things are heading in a bad direction and you feel powerless to stop them.  I mostly say it in my head, though.

Edited by RescueMom

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Oh my, I have been known in my household to binge watch Sports Night in one weekend. I am SO up to a re-watch if anyone is interested. My love for Peter Krause knows no bounds. ::giggle::

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I am 51, no comment necessary, but one thing I notice more than anything else is my capacity to forget stuff, like where my bluetooth is.

When I am scrounging around my house looking for stuff, I will inevitably say out loud, there are three things I am doing, I am losing things, I am forgetting things, and then there is the third one.

And this will make my daughter laugh each time, and that is what I live for. ::giggle::

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When one of my children cannot find his or her shoes, I do tend to ask "Have you checked on your feet?" This simply proves that I am as capable as a stroke victim at making jokes.

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Watching my Sports Night DVDs has gotten me through some tough times. About five years ago, my son (then barely 8 years old) had a bit of a mental break and was hospitalized for about a week so we could get a diagnosis and treatment protocol started for his pediatric mood disorder. (Whoa, way to bring the board down there, Mama!) Aaaanyway...I would work part of the day, then drive up to the hospital an (approx. 1.5 hours from my office, 35 minutes or so from home) to visit him during evening visiting times while my parents watched the other kids for me.  Coming home from the hospital, I would put in a few episodes of SN to bring my spirits back up. Even when it made me cry (see The Apology, the final scene from Eli's Coming, and Dana's meltdown in What Kind of Day Has It Been), it made me feel good because of how deeply the CSC gang cared for and protected each other.

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After watching this fabulous and criminally-unwatched show, it boggles my mind that Peter Krause and Josh Charles are not bigger stars.  They were both fantastic on this show.  I watched "Sports Night" after I started watching" Parenthood" and "The Good Wife".  They both are just SO GOOD.

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Hope things are better with your son, St. Claire (though I will still think of you as StKatherine). This is one of those shows that can make you feel a bit better about life; it worked that way for me when my mom was sick.

I'm up for a rewatch!

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NOTE 04.12.16:  This thread may seem incoherent.  It was originally created as 23 separate threads for a re-watch.  I have since combined them all into one season thread, and removed the descriptions for each episode.  Carry on ... please just keep this thread to Season One, thank you. 

 

1) Pilot
2) The Apology
3) The Hungry and the Hunted
4) Intellectual Property
5) Mary Pat Shelby
6) The Head Coach, Dinner and the Morning Mail
7) Dear Louise
8) Thespis
9) The Quality of Mercy at 29K
10) Shoe Money Tonight
11) The Six Southern Gentlemen of Tennessee
12) Smoky
13) Small Town
14) Rebecca
15) Dana and the Deep Blue Sea
16) Sally
17) How Are Things in Gloca Morra?
18) The Sword of Orion
19) Eli's Coming
20) Ordnance Tactics
21) Ten Wickets
22) Napoleon's Battle Plan
23) What Kind of Day Has it Been

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Casey: swoon

Dan: yum

Dana: cute

Natalie: perky

Jeremy: adorable (albeit over the top a bit)

Issac: dad-like

Ntozake Nelson has something to say about a world record!

This pilot offers everything a pilot is supposed to, but in only 22 minutes. We are introduced to the characters, we see how they all relate to each other, we see who the good guys are and who the bad guys are, and we see a nice resolve at the end. Perfect.

Except for the laugh track, ugh.

My favorite scene? Casey calling his son to tell him to watch Ntozake, remembering why he loves his job. And everything else can take a back seat.

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From the Pilot:

Dana:  Name three things.

Jeremy:  Improve their free-throw percentage...

Natalie: Yes.

Jeremy:  Run the floor...

Dana:  Okay. One more.

Jeremy:  Tell Spike Lee to sit down and shut up?

Natalie:  Excellent!

Dana:  Well, welcome to Sports Night.

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I have to say that I find it hard to believe that Casey has less charm and charisma on air than JJ's high school driving instructor, even when he is in a funk.

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My go-to phrase whenever I like something is to say I like it "to an admittedly psychotic extent." I also use the three things bit when I forget something, which is more often than I like to admit.

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I will inevitably say out loud, there are three things I am doing, I am losing things, I am forgetting things, and then there is the third one.

Oh man, I use this one all the time.  Because I am constantly losing things and forgetting things (and...the third thing), so it just works.  

 

This one works best if someone can do half of it (which means I have to be hanging out with another Sports Night fan, which thankfully happens pretty regularly), but I sometimes use:

"It's a vicious circle."

"Yep. Just keeps going around and around."

"Never stops."

"That's what makes it vicious."

"And a circle."

The first time I used that particular sequence of dialogue I wasn't even quoting it intentionally.  I was hanging out with friends when someone said something about a vicious circle and I found myself responding with, "That's what makes it vicious.  And a circle."  And then I sat there trying so hard to figure out what that line was from.  I did eventually figure it out and I guess that then became part of my TV quoting repertoire.

Edited by smrou
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Very few lines have the power to gut me as deeply as "I'm sorry, Sam. You deserved better in my hands." Even moreso than "No rich, young white kid ever got anywhere with my comparing himself to Rosa Parks." The Apology is such a good episode.

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Except for the laugh track, ugh.

 

No kidding, that track is painful! I don't know if I'm just now less accustomed to hearing one, or if it was particularly badly used, but shut UP, fake laughers! I applaud the evolution of sitcoms in this matter.

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I read something recently about the laugh track and dang if I can't remember where it was, when I get home I will look in my history to see if I can find it. By memory it mentioned something about how this was Sorkin's first time in creating a comedy series and his writing didn't set itself up for timing for laughs to take place. So people in the audience were confused where they were supposed to laugh, almost afraid to laugh because as you well know, the dialog is so quick that if you laugh, you miss it. The audience had never seen anything like this before.

I believe it also said that during the second season they convinced the higher ups to let them leave out the audience by telling them they needed more room for the sets. HA! That is when the series started to really cook.

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My go-to phrase whenever I like something is to say I like it "to an admittedly psychotic extent."

Oh, my; that became such an integral part of my vocabulary I had completely forgotten where I'd picked it up.

I also tend to use, "Are you nuts?  Are you just some nutty nut person who's nuts?"  (I know it's "girl" in the original quote, but, unlike Sorkin, I don't use that word to refer to adults.)

And I dole out the sage advice, "If you're dumb, surround yourself with smart people.  And if you're smart, surround yourself with smart people who disagree with you."

Much of Jeremy's The Hungry and the Hunted monologue gets used when anyone speaks of hunting for sport.

I'm also on the look-out for more ways to include "I told many, many people" in my conversations.

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"Are you nuts?  Are you just some nutty nut person who's nuts?"

I realize it's a West Wing quotation and not Sports Night but one I use that has a sort of similar rhythm/style to this "nuts" one is "Just be wrong.  Just stand there in your wrongness and be wrong."

I'm also on the look-out for more ways to include "I told many, many people" in my conversations.

You might just have to become more of a gossip than you currently are. 

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This has to be among my top three episodes. As I mentioned in the quotes thread, "I'm sorry, Sam. You deserved better in my hands," reduces me to a puddle of goo. Isaac's gentle call out of Dan's misguided stand, coupled with the intense affection he has ("No rich, young white guy has ever gotten anywhere with me by comparing himself to Rosa Parks.") was a beautiful illustration of the tough-love approach he so often employed, and also showed the respect that the team has for him. The ongoing perception in the press that Casey is uncool; where is that coming from?! (it's probably coming from reality.) Jeremy's highlight package gives him a chance to affect the viewers' feelings about baseball (God knows, it's affected Casey's).

"The network is suggesting an apology."

"To whom?"

"To you; the network is suggesting you apologize..."

"To whom should I apologize?!" The grammar geek in my loves that Dan properly used "to whom" instead of "to who." As an aside, I often have things in my meeting notes about discussions with the World Health Organization, and whenever I type that we are speaking "to WHO," MS Word wants to change it to "...to WHOM." 

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The actors are more settled into their roles in this episode than in the pilot and for me it's easier to believe they have been close friends for years. Jeremy is not my favorite in the episode but I do enjoy his argument about the baseball highlights and Casey's frustration - 'you need to make it shorter', 'it needs to be shorter', 'try making it shorter'.

This seems an appropriate time to disclose that I also have a Time Life 70's compilation that includes 'Afternoon Delight'. Mine is called Suddenly 70's and I listen to it quite often!

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This seems an appropriate time to disclose that I also have a Time Life 70's compilation that includes 'Afternoon Delight'. Mine is called Suddenly 70's and I listen to it quite often!

You officially are cool.  ::giggle::

My favorite Pandora station is 70's Lite Rock. 

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In "The Apology" ... Sarcasm, thy name is Dana.

Can't tell you how many times I have used this line, substituting the person's name who I am talking to at the time. TOTALLY forgot it came from Sports Night!

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I have not done the re-watch yet, but I had to post anyway to say that the scene where Jeremy talks about hunting at the end is one of my favorite scenes ever, not just a favorite from this show. I have watched it so many times I don't even need to watch it again, as I pretty much have it memorized, but I will (probably more than once) because it is so good.

"...and it sure as hell wasn't sports."

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Yes, I've incorporated so much of that - especially "[it] wasn't food, it wasn't shelter, and it sure wasn't sports" - into conversations about hunting that I probably owe Aaron Sorkin royalties.  (Just try and collect, Benjamin.)

That scene is all Joshua Malina's, of course, but Felicity Huffman and Robert Guillaume show why they're respected pros by genuinely listening and reacting to the monologue.

"I know these are animals, and they don't play bridge and go the prom, but you can't tell me the little one didn't know who his mother was.  That's gotta mean something."

This is also the episode in which we see quite clearly that Isaac is the greatest boss in the world.

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Oops, my apologies, the comment above belonged in the quotes thread...

I remember the first time I watched this, how incredibly uncomfortable I was with the silence. What brilliant writing and direction. They so had me on the edge of my seat on that one. I could feel myself in the control room, and I thought it awesome that Dana didn't crack under the pressure. It showed that she had a connection with her sportscasters that went beyond producer.

The way that Casey broke the tension was BRILLIANT. The chemistry between the actors was amazing to watch.

I am trying to refrain from saying this was one of my favorite episodes, because I will probably be saying that to each one. Suffice it to say, I love them all, but right now, this is my favorite. HA!

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I don't know why, but I'll always love when Dana kind of cups Jeremy's cheek with her palm after that speech. There was something so ... motherly about it that it still makes me aww to this day.

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One of my favorite aspects of this episode is the level of frustration that Isaac has toward Jeremy for not trusting him to listen to an arguement against hunting- the fact that he's not mad that Jeremy was opposed to the assignment, he's mad that Jeremy didn't feel comfortable enough with his bosses to come to them with his concerns. This was my first exposure to "If you are dumb, surround yourself with smart people. If you are smart surround yourself with smart people who disagree with you," which I still think is one of the best management credos to adhere to. Also, "I'm a very smart man, and Mark Sabeth is an idiot!" will never not make me smile. 

I'm also very bothered that two sports anchors discussing people named "Gordon" cannot come up with anyone other than Liddy and Lightfoot. Mr. Hockey himself should come kick their asses for that.

Edited by St. Claire
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This seems an appropriate time to disclose that I also have a Time Life 70's compilation that includes 'Afternoon Delight'. Mine is called Suddenly 70's and I listen to it quite often!

 

I don't know who made the choices for music outtros on this show, but whoever did it did a fantastic job, throughout the series. Afternoon Delight hits just the right chord, somehow picking up after such a serious, heavy moment with a touch of sweetness and nostalgia, and turning the focus away from Dan to Casey.

A lot of my job is editing, so the entire scene for "make it shorter" is constantly bouncing around in my head after dealing with an unwieldy writer.

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Casey really handled that beautifully. It didn't seem to me like he knew the story already. Did anyone else feel differently?

Throughout the series I go back and forth between which is my favorite - Casey or Dan. Most of the time it's Casey though and it was in this episode. 

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I have a very good friend named Gordon and I have told him that he really doesn't exist because his last name is not Liddy or Lightfoot. 

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I am with you yeswedo, I felt as if Casey was hearing the story for the first time, or maybe how it was being told, which seems a definite possibility.

Casey wins all the time for me, not by much though ... but I have a crush on Peter Krause, so it's not much of a competition.

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::giggle::

I had the music channel on earlier, and I happened to look up to a Sting song at the precise moment it said on the screen that his real name is Gordon Sumner. Enter Twilight Zone theme.

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This is definitely my favorite episode of the series.  The guilt Dan has been carrying is written all over his face as he gathers himself together.  I always though Casey was my favorite, but I was wrong - it is, and always has been, Dan.

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You know, Joshua Malina doesn't always get a lot of love in anything he does.  At least I don't see it.  But dang, I felt every emotion he delivered in his scene in Issac's office.  He acted the heck out of that scene. 

I loved how Issac and Dana just listened as he told his story.  Who does that anymore?  At least in the work environment setting. 

During his speech, at a particularly hard part, Dana looks at Issac, and then gets up and sits on the window sill.  I remember thinking the 2nd or 3rd time I saw this scene what incredible directing that was.  I don't know the reasoning behind it, but I always felt it was a lovely way for Dana to let Jeremy feel comfortable to get it all out to the head honcho. 

Brilliant line from Issac:  "If you feel that strongly about something, you have a responsibility to try to change my mind."

Are there actually bosses like that?

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Wow, didn't even notice that Loandbehold, thanks for the catch.  Just did a copy and paste from TheTVDB.com for the description.  I fixed it.

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I rewatch Sports Night about once a year, so I joined in on this site's rewatch (except I binge, so I'm a couple of episodes ahead right now).

 

I've got to say, it's an amazing credit to Aaron Sorkin that he can create characters and character moments that I love so very much that I will continue to watch despite occasional truly cringeworthy plot points and character lapses.

 

I'm looking at you, frozen turkey thawing on the light grid--and the ugliness of Natalie and the Secret Santa socks for Casey. Ugh.

Edited by Reishe
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