人生如戏,戏如人生

I’ve been following the US elections coming up on us in 2 days, and at the same time, I happened to be watching (actually more like re-watching for the 5th time) seasons 6 & 7 of The West Wing, and I can’t help but notice the uncanny similarities between what was going on in the show and what was unfolding in real life. All these were just floating at the back of my mind until I read the papers today and saw this article entitled: “The West Wing saw this coming”. And you guessed it, the article was about the striking similarities between the popular TV series and the current election panning out in the US!

To start, the Demoractic Party fields a minority candidate (a Hispanic Matthew Santos played by Jimmy Smits in TWW; Barack Obama in RL), but not after a hard fight to be chosen as the party’s candidate against other candidates (John Hoynes, Bob Russell in TWW; Hilary Clinton in RL). To shore up his lack of experience in the Washington beltway, the Democratic candidate chooses a veteran party elder as his veep choice (Leo McGarry played by the brilliant John Spencer in TWW; Joe Biden in RL). In the Republican camp, the GOP gets its act together much earlier than the Dems in terms of picking a candidate and they pick an often maverick but always popular candidate (Arnold Vinick played to perfection by Alan Alda in TWW; John McCain in RL). On the lead-up to the presidential debates, both candidates decide on a change in the debate format to make it more substantial and ‘real’, as occurs in both TWW and RL. But just as the election reaches its last lap, the entire landscape is shaken up by an unpredictable and unexpected event – a nuclear accident in California in TWW; the banking crisis in RL. In both TWW and RL, the incumbent President (Jed Bartlet played incrediby by Martin Sheen in TWW; George W. Bush in RL) invites the two candidates into the White House at the 11th hour to discuss possible solutions and policies with regards to the situations either of them would inherit after taking office. And of course, at the end of all these, no one can miss the yet-to-be-fulfilled-but-all-crucial aspect: the outcome of the election. In RL, we will know in a few days’ time; in TWW, we already know.

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~ by irwin on November 2, 2008.

5 Responses to “人生如戏,戏如人生”

  1. Obama won and my whole office was jumping with joy (me included)!! So did TWW end up the same way RL did?

  2. I got a better idea! You wanna borrow Seasons 6 and 7 of The West Wing from me? =)Think it will be much more interesting if you watch it and be amazed at how fiction and real life intertwines…

  3. That would be great! Hope I wouldn’t be lost though! I haven’t watched TWW since year 2000! 😉

  4. Oh, didn’t know you are a TWW fan too! =) Which season did you stop at? And more importantly…WHY did you stop??? =P

  5. Actually I wouldn’t consider myself a TWW fan, ‘cos I didn’t even finish 1 season! I stopped at either the 1st or 2nd season, not so sure… I was back in Australia then, maybe TWW didn’t show over there but I remember being hooked onto the trashy shows which we didn’t get here in Sg! Haha…

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