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on "Masters of Sex" and real-life Masters and Johnson.
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"MASTERS OF SEX" this
Sunday, July 26
Let's have a little perspective here. Masters of Sex is the first TV drama series based on an historical biography in recent memory, if ever. So it's been quite a challenge for showrunner Michelle Ashford. As author of the book, my view is that the MASTERS drama is its own entity, created by Michelle, but with a remarkable commitment to use as much of my book's real-life scenes, characters, themes and nuances as possible. (Such as the Shah and wife case study tonight). Michelle won an Emmy a few years ago for HBO's "John Adams" mini-series based on David McCullough's book. But neither she nor any other TV showrunner has taken on an adaptation challenge of this depth and multi-season length. (Somehow I can't imagine Matt Weiner or Vince Gilligan getting lawyer calls like she has with their dramas, lol!)
Way before the '70s feminist movement, Virginia Johnson was a pioneering working woman who tried to balance her family life along with her history-making medical work with Masters. As any parent today knows (especially working women), dealing with the lives of children and teenagers is a constant dilemma. I think Michelle has done a remarkable job in portraying the conflicts that Virginia faced in her personal life as well as capturing the essence of her very complex relationships with Bill and Libby Masters.
|Allison Janney wins Emmy for "Masters of Sex"|
Imho, I think MASTERS really is the best drama on TV, showing its dramatic depth by exploring human intimacy and matters of the heart, rather than dwelling in the cliches of male anti-heroes and their violent worlds. I think it has to be judged as a first of its kind, one of the most unique offerings in this age of narrative story-telling. If television is going to prove itself the most mature medium, it must be reflected in the everyday lives portrayed on screen.