The Trial of the Chicago 7 and the Oeuvre of Aaron Sorkin: An Assessment by Pretty Much Pop: A Culture Podcast (#89)

In lieu of an Oscars episode, the Pret­ty Much Pop pod­cast this week con­sid­ers one of the nom­i­nat­ed films, The Tri­al of the Chica­go 7, and the career of its writer/director, Aaron Sorkin, which start­ed with A Few Good Men through four TV series (most notably The West Wing), and films like The Social Net­work, Steve Jobs, and Mol­ly’s Game.

Your hosts Bri­an Hirt, Eri­ca Spyres, and Mark Lin­sen­may­er con­sid­er Sork­in’s stock recur­ring char­ac­ters and their polit­i­cal dia­tribes, plots often based on true events, and how his writ­ing cre­ates dra­ma. Do we feel uplift­ed or vague­ly dirty after a Sorkin bath? It’s great to have char­ac­ters that aren’t stu­pid, but are they actu­al­ly smart or just designed to seem that way? Are the devi­a­tions from fact just good use of dra­mat­ic license or pos­i­tive­ly harm­ful? We touch on vir­tu­al­ly all of Sork­in’s pro­duc­tions (well, except for the plays; he actu­al­ly con­sid­ers him­self native­ly a play­wright) and still have ener­gy for a few Oscars mus­ings and reflec­tions about includ­ing real loca­tions or news events in fic­tion.

Here are some arti­cles we used to pre­pare our­selves:

Hear more of this pod­cast at This episode includes bonus dis­cus­sion that you can access by sup­port­ing the pod­cast at This pod­cast is part of the Par­tial­ly Exam­ined Life pod­cast net­work.

Pret­ty Much Pop: A Cul­ture Pod­cast is the first pod­cast curat­ed by Open Cul­ture. Browse all Pret­ty Much Pop posts.

Open Culture was founded by Dan Colman.