The Complete Guide To The Series Finale Of 'Studio 60'


You may not have realized it, but at just a couple of minutes before 11 p.m. last night, the final credits rolled on Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, ending Aaron Sorkin's bold, ill-fated experiment in melding the light-hearted Hollywood world of late-night sketch comedy shows with the absurdly high geopolitical stakes of his Emmy-winning White House drama, The West Wing. And while a lesser showrunner recently chose to cloak the last moments of his beloved series in frustrating ambiguity, Sorkin was confident enough in his creative choices to allow a metaphorical Man in the Members Only Jacket to wander the halls of the darkened studio, bringing each storyline to a satisfying conclusion with a bullet to the back of every character's head. Because we suspect that many of you missed the series finale, we're happy to run down how each of your favorite players finished up his or her primetime existence. [Warning to the DVR users whose selfish insistence on time-shifting the show kept it from reaching its Nielsen potential: There are spoilers ahead.]

· Matt, for the moment free of his lingering addiction to feel-good pills, reunited romantically with the religious one whose name always escapes us. Marion, we think. Esther? Eh, whatever, at least we remember her character type.

· Jordan survived the complications from her pregnancy, drew up adoption papers allowing new fiance Danny to legally become the father of her newborn daughter, and for one blissful moment, finally stopped worrying about the ratings.

· Jack from Wings and D.L. Hughley found Matt's well-hidden bottle of emergency Scotch, then spent a tense night getting wasted and reliving the corporate censorship issues of NBS's wrongheaded, spineless past. No high fives or one-armed hugs were exchanged, though it was apparent both men would have liked that.

· Just as Tom Jeter was giving the OK to send millions of dollars to mercenaries to save his brother from his terrorist captors in Afghanistan, God sent a Blackhawk helicopter to rescue the hostages from certain death and Tom from choosing the selfish side of a morally compromising dilemma. And once Tom concluded a tearful cellphone chat with his liberated sibling, the Gruff Military Guy with the Heart of Gold informed the entire Studio 60 gang that the President had ordered an immediate and total withdrawal of all troops from Iraq, an announcement that kicked off the most jubilent wrap party in the show's long history.

· The ferret ate the snake, the coyote ate the ferret, and, even though there was no explanation of how it came to roam the crawlspace underneath the studio, a mountain lion ate the coyote.

· Lobster Boy and Peripheral Vision Man were married by just-ordained minister Fake Nic Cage in a quiet ceremony in Matt's office.

· Because he was never real to begin with, Tim Batale did not make an appearance; however, it will eventually be revealed in the DVD collection that if one freeze-frames Matt looking out from his office window during the marriage ceremony, his reflection in the glass is briefly swapped with Tim's.

· The blacklisted, Alzheimer's-afflicted writer got both his memory and his career back, penning a sketch savagely satirizing the mistakes of HUAC-era Hollywood.

· Perched in a catwalk high above the soundstage, Sting quietly strummed a lute, but everyone was far too busy enjoying their happy endings to even notice.


[Image: An ad taken about by fans in yesterday's THR]