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Dick Cheney: The HBO Miniseries

From the folks at HBO who brought us the absurdly skewed dramatization of the 2000 election, comes a new miniseries detailing the political career of the left’s favorite villain, Vice President Dick Cheney:

The mini, which will be based on the bestselling book [Angler: The Cheney Vice Presidency] and the Frontline documentary The Dark Side, tells the story of Richard Bruce Cheney from his early days as Donald Rumsfeld’s protégé in the Nixon administration, to the nation’s youngest Chief of Staff under President Ford, to serving as Secretary of Defense under George H.W. Bush, through two controversial terms as Vice President under President George W. Bush.

And from the looks of the production team, there’s little hope that this will be halfway impartial. The book that it will be based on, Barton Gellman’s Angler, portrays the former vice president as the ruthless puppet-master of the Bush administration. According to Gellman, his book exposed “a man of deep conviction and remorseless will who reshaped his office and his times.”

The book is the subject of a takedown by Christopher Willcox at the Weekly Standard, who wrote, “Angler is most notable for is its obvious animus and its disregard for the traditional newsman’s separation of church (editorial opinion) and state (fact-based reporting).”

The series, which is still in the development stages, may be worth watching just for the sheer entertainment value. Deadspin also notes that the Cheney film will be the “second HBO longform project about prominent Republican party figures announced in the past few weeks. The pay cable network also has greenlit Game Change, a Jay Roach-directed movie, which follows John McCain’s 2008 presidential campaign from his selection of Sarah Palin as his running mate to their ultimate defeat in the general election.”

What Deadspin doesn’t mention is that Game Change also portrays President Obama’s candidacy in a less-than-flattering light at times. Based on its previous political films, HBO has shown that it’s willing to depict high-profile Republicans in a gratuitously unfavorable way, so it will be interesting to see if it does the same for prominent Democrats.



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