March 27, 2013 at 1:12 pm #177561
In true open-source style does anyone want to contribute here? We can leave suggestions for characters, plot, dialogue up on GL and let Hollywood do its thing. Ideas?
March 28, 2013 at 1:18 pm #177569
I always thought that “Parks and Recreation” was that show. Although something in between small-town Pawnee, and “The West Wing”, would ring a little truer for those of us in between the small-scale municipal and the “corridors of power”.
I’m not saying it would help us earn public support for our present salary levels, or collective bargaining rights, though, UNLESS all the “idiot managers” (a staple of TV comedy) were our political masters, and all the heroic efforts came from the pubilc servants.
Or were you thinking of something more serious, like ER for those in the medium and lower pay grades? “I need a briefing note on toxic industrial effluents for a Senate subcommittee hearing, STAT!”.
March 28, 2013 at 2:44 pm #177567
I’ve never seen Parks & Recreation so perhaps it’s similar? I was thinking of a DC-centric comedy show, sort of a cross between Seinfeld (“a show about nothing”) and The Office (“a show about nothing at the office and small trivia”).
I’ve never seen any TV comedy about a generic federal agency – again DC not state and local.
The basic concept of the show is something like – new recruit comes to Washington in the best spirit of public service and is then confronted with…reality.
* the jaded veteran, “seen it all”
* the evil boss
* the bumbling but well meaning leader
* the corporate rebel
* the truly insane person who somehow still has a job (like “Milton” in the movie “Office Space”)
* “the data call”
* “the morale building event”
* “the approval process”
I realize these would sound like shockingly ordinary and boring episodes but there is a certain comedy to them too – I’m not a TV writer, but am hoping someone will see it and pick it up.
There are definitely other threads on GL about this.
March 28, 2013 at 3:46 pm #177565
Just remembered. There was also the show that Michael J Fox and Barry Bostwick had, called “Spin City”, although that was municipal politics/government, not federal or state.
I picked up this book at a high school rummage sale a couple years ago: http://www.amazon.ca/completely-civil-servant-Arthur-Sage/dp/0920792480 Though it was published in 1985 (under a nom de guerre), the content is still shockingly relevant, and every bit as funny and biting now as it likely was then. You wouldn’t know it’s as old as it is.
There’s a game of career snakes and ladders in the middle, plus a delightfully sardonic “Are you good enough to be a public servant?” quiz. No end of potential plotlines in it.
March 29, 2013 at 10:14 pm #177563
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