Have any of you been watching “The Kennedys” miniseries on the Reelz channel?

We’ve been recording it and finished watching part 6 or 8 this morning. The final two parts are on Sunday night. The show was originally scheduled to air on the History Channel but the plug was pulled. Producer Joel Surnow’s conservative political leanings probably meant that the History Channel took flak from both the Kennedy family and the Hollywood left in general, although A&E Entertainment said the film “wasn’t historically accurate enough” for the History Channel brand.

My guess is that those “historical inaccuracies” they speak of are behind-closed-door conversations between two people, and nobody can ever actually verify what was said. But if that’s the History Channel’s standard, they’ll never be able to show any dramatized historical film.

It’s hard to tell which is the reason for some of the backlash the movie got (or the History Channel was afraid they might get if they aired it). Was it the depictions of all the affairs? Rosemarie’s lobotomy? Joe Sr. essentially buying the Senate election for JFK, as well as Chicago in the 1960 presidential election? Those things are fairly well documented. There are depictions of Jackie getting hooked on amphetamines for a block of time that I hadn’t heard about — if that did happen. JFK is shown many times popping pills and getting shots for back pain and Addison’s disease, but again, I don’t think that’s purely creative license.

Modern-day “progressives” and assorted Obamaphiles might take issue with the way JFK is depicted standing up to Khrushchev and communism in general. JFK didn’t try to find middle ground with Khrushchev — he didn’t go deliver a speech in Red Square and apologize for America and hope that would make the Soviets remove their missiles from Cuba. He didn’t say “we have our missiles in Turkey so it’s only fair that they have missiles in Cuba.” No, he stood up to Khrushchev, and Khrushchev blinked.

What’s strange so far is that, after viewing 6 of the 8 parts, which takes us up to about 1963, is that there’s been no appearance at all by Ted. Maybe they’re waiting for Chappaquiddick to introduce that character, or maybe he won’t be included at all.

Oh, one other way you can tell this isn’t the usual liberal Hollywood production is that, so far at least, there hasn’t been a scene featuring J. Edgar Hoover trying on dresses in his office at FBI headquarters.

Here’s the trailer:


11 Responses to “‘The Kennedys’ Miniseries”

  1. SignPainterGuy on April 9th, 2011 2:33 pm

    The JFK election was my first exposure to politicking – it tasted bad then and hasn`t improved ! I was 7, tv was still in its toddler stage, larger than life, and the Kennedys were treated like American Royalty. On every station, it was live reports from DC on everything the news crews could spot. Give me a break ! I want to see Bugs and Daffy and Popeye !

    My Maternal Grandma and an Aunt or two had this near-obsession with them and the British Royals that creeped me out. In all their homes, every large furniture top was glass covered with LIFE and LOOK magazine covers underneath and coffee-table editions of bios. After the assassination, these "shrines" took on a "Museum" type of reverence. Did I say it creeped me out ?!

    Living it was enough. Watching it now and seeing many of the suspicions confirmed would be nothing short of torture…..

    I find JFK`s military service and strong stance against the Russians and his challenge to Americans to strive for personal and national excellence honorable and praise worthy. His death stands as a national tragedy ! I pretty much draw the line there !

  2. Nanny on April 9th, 2011 8:14 pm

    I have watched all the episodes. Nothing really new except that they show Joe Sr. for the creep he really was. All that has been portrayed has been out in public for years so I don't see what the hoopla was about this venture. I am assuming that the last two episodes is going to deal with the deaths of JFK and Bobby and maybe the drunk one's foray into Olympic swimming. If they do I will assume that is what will be what the girls were bitchin about because up until now I don't believe any movie has been made about what happened to Mary Jo Kopeckne. With just two episodes left to go that is about all there is left. Joe Sr. is the one who really gets skewered so far but we already knew what a whore he was anyway. The actors and portrayals has been very, very, good I must say. Especially Kinear – spot on and Katie Holmes really does look like Jackie. Barry Pepper as Bobby is especially good, too.

  3. SignPainterGuy on April 9th, 2011 10:14 pm

    Now that would be worth watching !

  4. Doug on April 10th, 2011 12:06 am

    Hey Nanny, are you watching the Michigan game? Heading to overtime for the national championship. Good luck!

  5. Jackson on April 11th, 2011 11:30 am

    I have been waiting for a the speech where JFK talks about cutting taxes as the way to grow the economy. Probably on the cutting room floor. I have never been a big Kennedy Family fan but I do like this miniseries. Shows a lot of the struggles and pain that the family endured at the hands of Joe Sr and it really portrays Bobby as a tough, honest, and deeply caring person. Thinking of all those kids losing their dads and uncles is pretty sad. Still not buying the one shooter theory in the JFK assn.

  6. Obama bin Biden on April 11th, 2011 3:55 pm

    I said the same thing- there isn't one scene or mention of The Swimmer.

  7. Obama bin Biden on April 11th, 2011 3:58 pm

    The right director could of done JFK's assasination better. It should have been filmed from inside the car. From Jackie's perspective, you see Kinnear grab his throat; then have Connolly yell in pain; all the while Jackie is asking Jack what's wrong. Then you splatter her clothes with Kinnear's blood- that would have been effective.

  8. Obama bin Biden on April 11th, 2011 4:00 pm

    The country dodged a bullet with RFK- (no pun intended) he was Ted on steroids.

  9. Mike on April 12th, 2011 12:28 am

    Bizarre how they totally excised Teddy. Very strange. Kinnear and Pepper were excellent, Holmes not so much.

  10. Obama bin Biden on April 12th, 2011 9:38 am

    Holmes picked it up in the last 3 episodes. Kinnear was a dead ringer but didn't have the voice down. I'd expect Emmys go to Pepper and Wilkinson for sure. Maybe they could give a special award to the actor that was going to play The Swimmer.

  11. Mary on April 17th, 2011 6:57 pm

    I thought it was very well cast, and very well acted, especially Barry Pepper as Bobby. As others have mentioned above, I did want to see how the family handled the Ted/Mary Jo situation.

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