Nearly every time viewers saw Amanda Peet's character, Jordan McDeere, during last night's fresh episode of "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip," she had her mouth full of food. Not a dainty little bite, like one might expect to see from a super-skinny, type-A woman. But huge, heapin' loads o' food. It made perfect sense. For someone who's 12 weeks pregnant. As Jordan's character was. (Peet's pregnant in real life too, though I don't know how far along.) And it was so refreshing to see on television. A pregnant woman eating like a pregnant woman, eating like I ate when I was pregnant, when I wasn't busy puking my guts out.
A couple of things -- other than the massive mouthfuls of food -- intrigued me about how "Studio 60" is handling the pregnancy of the fictional president of a fictional entertainment division of a fictional TV network which is supposed to resemble the REAL television network, NBC.
Her boss' reaction:
Normally, the fictional president of the fictional network, Jack Rudolph (played awesomely by Steven Weber), is an irate, sarcastic, witty verbal jouster. He makes cutting remarks about everything, particularly about the fact that Jordan's scandalous past is bad for the network. So, when Jordan told him she's pregnant by an ex-boyfriend with whom she hooked up for a night, I was expecting a verbal blast from Jack, something along the lines of uber-nasty.
Instead, Jack was all sunshine and rainbows. He was cordial. He was soft.
Perhaps Jordan's pregnancy announcement meant that Jack had to be super-nice to her in the event that the network was considering terminating her employment and didn't want to be sued for pregnancy discrimination.
I'm not sure what was up with the reaction. But it was weird.
Danny, the executive producer's reaction:
Despite the fact that executive producer Danny Tripp (played by Josh Lyman who was played by Bradley Whitford) announced that he's in love with Jordan, I adored the fact that he was trying to anticipate problems Jordan would have in balancing her pregnancy with her job demands. (I know, I used that "balancing" word that I so despise . . .)
For example, networks typically unveil their new and returning shows in a major media event called "upfronts" in the spring, right around the time when Jordan is due to give birth. When Danny raised this potential conflict to Jordan, she made a joke about it, saying that she'd use her imminent birth as a news hook to get the media really interested in NBS's slate of entertainment programming and to guarantee that they'd attend and make a spectacle out of the event.
She joked about the impact of the pregnancy on her job. But Danny didn't. And neither did Jack, which led me to this question:
When you told your boss that you were pregnant, what kind of response did you get?