Ruminator magazine just posted a longish and quite funny excerpt of an interview with Fran Lebowitz, from their upcoming fall issue.
SM: I find [Vincent D’Onofrio’s] monologue at the end of every episode [of Criminal Intent]-where he wraps everything up neatly and corners the bad guy into confessing’comforting, even if it’s the most unrealistic part of the show.
FL: You know, the reason it’s comforting is that it provides people who are disturbed with how idiotic the world is, with the idea that’should there be a very smart person in a terrible situation’ that person would be listened to. That’s the thing that really attracts me to this show. Now, we all know that this guy would never be a cop. But we also know something much, much worse than that: anytime a person that smart appears someplace useful in society, they are not going to be listened to. Whereas, on this TV show, everyone, including his superiors, listens to him. More than that, they completely defer to him’ the D.A., his captain. Why? Just because he’s smarter. We know the world works in exactly the opposite way. So, this kind of show provides a parallel universe for people who wish that were true. If life were anything like that TV show, George Bush could never be President. It just couldn’t happen if exceptional intelligence were highly valued. In fact, we live in a culture where intelligence, exceptional or not, is reviled.