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January 23, 2006


Who'd have thought we'd really like a sit-com/drama about a Catholic priest's life, work, and family.  Hands? Yeah, nobody.

But we're loving The Book of Daniel, which aired a few weeks ago with two hours of story about a very human priest, who stays true to both his faith, his family, and some interesting personal problems.

#1, he's hooked on painkillers.  This is probably the result of some story we haven't yet been exposed to, something to do with the pre-broadcast death of his son we expect. He pops pills in moments of stress, but it doesn't appear to be affecting his judgment, faculties, or emotional balance so the detail is just rounding him out as... well human.

#2, he talks to his personal savior.  No, really. He and Jesus chat all the time, about everything from his gay son, to the aforementioned pills, to the fact that Jesus was more a "one liner" kind of guy who never wrote any speeches down.  Sermon on the Mount?  "I just kind of ad-lib'ed that one."

We could go on about all the fully realized characters here, the interesting and unexpected predicaments that rise up, and the fairly great writing that holds it all together.  They're all great reasons to watch. 

Probably one of the best though is that NBC is facing mounting pressure from the pointy headed conservative watchdog group the American Family Association to shut the show down. Yeah, the same loving "Christian" group that wants women who have sex to be at risk for cervical cancer. That group is doing the usual "we're having all our sheep stop buying your sponsor's products and write them nasty letters about you" fuck-over of NBC.  This is what weak people do, they can't stand a critical eye so they lash out at inventive, creative, and thinking people.

Anyway, we're giving Daniel a thumbs up - give it a try.  The next episode is on Friday Jan 27th. Friday's a tough gig for any show, ratings hell, but Tivo it and then go out and buy some of the sponsor's products and write mail to NBC. 

  BTW - The actor who plays Jesus is just great.  Very understated, calm and warm.  Interesting that the last part he had was as the psychotic whore killer on Deadwood  

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