Showtime has given an authoritative, heartfelt “Bully!” to plans for a new limited series about Theodore Roosevelt, America’s loudest president. Written by American History X scripter David McKenna, whose previous output displays an almost Rooseveltian approach to the concept of subtlety, the series will track all the major events of the president’s life, from his sickly New York upbringing, to his days with the Rough Riders in the Spanish-American War, to his ascent to the presidency, and, (we assume) his eventual post-death tenure as a talking statute at New York’s American Museum Of Natural History.
As all new shows must, the new program comes with a variety or producers attached, including Ben Silverman, one of the minds behind one of Showtime’s previous stabs at historical drama, The Tudors. This time, though, Silverman will be taking on not some mere sexy English king, but a giant of American political history, a self-mythologist of the highest order, and the model for the world’s largest pair of stone pince-nez glasses. It’s a tall order, the success of which will hinge largely on who Showtime can find to fill Roosevelt’s khakis, stained as they are with heroism, as well as the blood of a lot of animals that were a lot more endangered once Teddy Roosevelt got through with them.