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The-newsroom

The Newsroom Review: A Player's Coach

by at . Comments

You got me, Aaron Sorkin and The Newsroom.

Just when I'm ready to once again go off on another episode for destroying any and all backbone on MacKenzie McHale - this week we learned she can only subtract on her fingers, doesn't understand basic economics concepts and gets easily played by a political candidate boyfriend - the show goes ahead and proves that I'm a male.

Because, gosh darn it, I couldn't help but tear up at that recreation of the classic Rudy scene.

Dev Patel on The Newsroom

Will McAvoy may be more than five foot nothing, and he may weigh more than 100 and nothing, but he came through big time on "Amen."

Too often on this series we've only been told (typically by MacKenzie, in between sobs and mis-sent emails) about how great of a guy Will actually is, but here we got to finally see it. The speech he gave to that tabloid piece of pond scum resonated not just because Sorkin placed Will on a pedestal and had him thumb his nose at a lesser reporter.

But because we actually bore witness to the examples he cited in that rant. We were taken inside the struggles of a news team and the sacrifices true journalists often make in a desperate attempt to get to the truth (hello, Lara Logan).

The football analogy works perfectly here: if past episodes focused a bit too much on Will and his mission, this installment allowed various members to run, pass block, kick field goals, haul in fly patterns... you get the idea. It was a team effort all around and The Newsroom was the better for it.

Were there still major flaws? Oh, heck yes. It's rather hard to believe - with all the flirting and looks exchanged - that Jim and Maggie would be at a point where she's talking about Four Seasons hotel rooms with another guy and buying him lingerie to give to her roommate.

It's beyond ridiculous and pathetic that that roommate would consider Valentine's Day her favorite holiday when we've been told each February 14 ends in disaster for her.

It's one thing to base a show around a grandiose, idealized version of the news, often lecturing viewers on how things could be; it's another to feature one character literally teaching another character (read: the audience) about the Glass-Steagall Act and how its repeal destroyed six decades of economic growth.

And, God, please tell me no real news room plasters its walls with hearts and decorations around Valentine's Day.

The Newsroom is an easy show to pick apart. There's a whole lot wrong with it, from its depiction of women to its obsession over a single topic to its contrived attempts at humor (running into glass doors? Really?). But when the dialogue snaps, and Will is saying everything you want to hear from an anchor, and Neal tells one story that makes him so much more than just "Punjab" in the eyes of his boss...

... well, it's enough to make you want to carry Sorkin off a football field in your shoulders.

Review

Editor Rating: 4.3 / 5.0
  • 4.3 / 5.0
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User Rating:

Rating: 4.7 / 5.0 (230 Votes)

Matt Richenthal is the Editor in Chief of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter and on Google+.

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It's a great show and I already care about all the characters. I hope it goes on for years and you, the reviewer are here to enjoy every single step of its undoubted success. But if the best you can do is write another bad review, with thinly disguised sarcasm, then maybe you'd prefer reviewing reality tv rather than quality drama. If so may I suggest you change channels and instead watch The Real Housewives of Kiss My Ass.

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I just love reading how conservatives are forming at the mouth trying desperately to trash the show yet it continues to gain support and an even stronger fan base. Newsroom is the best show on TV......

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This is a liberal show, written by the most liberal showrunner in the business and dedicated to showing us the awesomeness of the liberal journalists. Don't expect any bones to conservatives - from Sorkin's POV we might just as well drop dead for what he cares, and HBO's audience is already paid for. I expect the obligatory "Israel is evil" episode.

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This is a liberal show, written by the most liberal showrunner in the business and dedicated to showing us the awesomeness of the liberal journalists. Don't expect any bones to conservatives - from Sorkin's POV we might just as well drop dead for what he cares, and HBO's audience is already paid for. I expect the obligatory "Israel is evil" episode.

Avatar

This is a liberal show, written by the most liberal showrunner in the business and dedicated to showing us the awesomeness of the liberal journalists. Don't expect any bones to conservatives - from Sorkin's POV we might just as well drop dead for what he cares, and HBO's audience is already paid for. I expect the obligatory "Israel is evil" episode.

Avatar

This is a liberal show, written by the most liberal showrunner in the business and dedicated to showing us the awesomeness of the liberal journalists. Don't expect any bones to conservatives - from Sorkin's POV we might just as well drop dead for what he cares, and HBO's audience is already paid for. I expect the obligatory "Israel is evil" episode.

Avatar

This is a liberal show, written by the most liberal showrunner in the business and dedicated to showing us the awesomeness of the liberal journalists. Don't expect any bones to conservatives - from Sorkin's POV we might just as well drop dead for what he cares, and HBO's audience is already paid for. I expect the obligatory "Israel is evil" episode.

Avatar

This is a liberal show, written by the most liberal showrunner in the business and dedicated to showing us the awesomeness of the liberal journalists. Don't expect any bones to conservatives - from Sorkin's POV we might just as well drop dead for what he cares, and HBO's audience is already paid for. I expect the obligatory "Israel is evil" episode.

Avatar

Awesome episode, although the women aren't hot enough to be such gullible flakes. The Rush Limbaugh thing was kind of laughable - talk about manipulative - I would assume his quote was taken completely out of context because even he wouldn't be laughing about journalists being in serious danger. I do wish they would throw conservatives a bone and do an episode on something like ACORN giving advice on how to run a brothel, or Nancy Pelosi telling us we have to pass the healthcare bill to find out what's in it. If Will McAvoy really is conservative he wouldn't let something like that slide past.

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