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Why ‘Veep’ should be everyone’s election year binge

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at PSU chapter.

2024 might not be everyone’s most anticipated year due to the looming uncertainty of the 2024 Presidential Election. It seems that the election will have the same two presidential candidates as the 2020 election, as Presidential incumbent Joe Biden will likely face former President Donald Trump.

It already feels like coverage of these two candidates is fatigued, which could be attributed to the repeat ballot, constant coverage of Trump, or the fact that people have to choose between two old men to become the most powerful person in the country.

Keeping up with the media cycles during election season can be overwhelming. Whether it’s depressing, stressful or just disheartening, everyone needs some level of escape.

Enter “Veep.”

Starring comedy legend Julia Louis-Dreyfus as Selina Meyer, the Vice President of the United States, “Veep” follows Meyer and her staff who are navigating the executive office and trying to make an impressive legacy for the politician while having to keep up with the trivial games of politics.

This is a brutal, scathing, vicious and hysterical portrayal of the staff behind the scenes of the person one heartbeat away from being the leader of the free world. Following Meyer and her sometimes brilliant and sometimes moronic team can be both anxiety-inducing and hilarious.

“Veep” isn’t a “feel-good” show that will leave viewers optimistic about the political landscape in America like “Parks and Recreation” might. But its realism can open people’s eyes about the American government. In fact, Washington D.C. insiders have called “Veep” the most realistic portrayal of government in the media.

Yeah, “Parks and Rec” is an incredible show. But if you focus on the idea that good people like Leslie Knope can advance in government by doing the right thing and being hard workers, that can make you optimistic, and then you’ll be let down by the events that happen in real life.

The honesty and cynicism of “Veep” can offer some freedom. When it first aired (2012-2019), it did seem like the fictitious federal government was far crazier than the real one. But the final season clearly digs at the 2016 election, parodying both Hilary Clinton and Trump with a twist on that saga.

In an era where everything seems to be politicized and partisan, “Veep” consciously never reveals what political party Meyer or any of her opponents are in. This means that regardless of political ideology, “Veep” is a phenomenal satire without alienating viewers.

A show that is about the political system manages to highlight the issues with America’s government rather than about the current issues. You see the insincerity and waffling of politicians and how they don’t believe many things they stand for. Making it clear that these politicians prioritize power and legacy over making an actual change

It also highlights how people who are moronic and have no qualifications to be in positions of power can rise to those positions and push out people who have the intention of creating an ideal future.

“Veep” is more than just it’s brilliant satirical portrayal of the American political system. It’s one of the funniest shows ever to air.

The show is believed to have one of the highest JPM (Joke Per Minute) rates, which means that even when tensions get high, the show never goes long without a snarky joke or slapstick moment.

Louis-Dreyfus won six consecutive Emmys for her performance as Meyer. Louis-Dreyfus gives one of the greatest acting performances ever with “Veep.” She is hysterical, commanding, unhinged and dignified. No comedy performance in television history can hold a candle to Louis-Dreyfus in this role.

Tony Hale received six Emmy nominations, winning in 2013 and 2015, for his character Gary, the Vice President’s personal aide.

Additionally, multiple other cast members received nominations from the Television Academy, with Anna Chlumsky receiving six, Matt Walsh receiving two, and Gary Cole, Martin Mull, Hugh Laurie and Peter MacNicol all receiving one.

It wasn’t just the acting that got love from the Emmys as “Veep” won 60 Emmy, including Outstanding Comedy Series in 2015 or 2016.

“Veep” can create some of the most vile and unlikeable characters in television history but still manages to force the viewers to root for them. It’s compelling and keeps you on the edge of the sheet for every minute the viewer watches it.

“Saturday Night Live,” “Last Week Tonight,” “Late Night,” and “The Daily Show” are obvious staples of the political-comedy world, especially in an election year. But when needing to escape the insanity of the real world, “Veep” offers the perfect escape.

I am Sophia D'Ovidio, a third-year majoring in digital and print journalism with a minor in media studies. When I'm not writing for Her Campus @ PSU I am watching TV, at the gym, making TikToks or with my friends. During my time at Penn State, I also am the director of the Arts and Entertainment department at Commradio, Penn State's student-run, web-based radio station affiliated with the Bellisario College of Communications. I oversee and contribute to articles, talk shows, podcasts and live coverage events for my department. Additionally, I am a volunteer for THON, the largest student-run philanthropy event where Penn State students raise money to combat childhood cancer. I am from Allentown, New Jersey, and I love spending time at home with my family and down the shore. My other interests include comedy, film, women's soccer, hiking and music.