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The Newsroom's Season 1 Finale: Won't Get Fooled Again

The Newsroom S01E10: "The Greater Fool"

There are many, many things to be said about last night's season finale of The Newsroom, but I'm going to lead off with the thing that it did best. It settled things. Even if it didn't always settle them in ways that were particularly enjoyable to watch, nor particularly sensible, it still settled them. The Newsroom is now at rest, and while there are certainly loose ends to tie up come next season, the biggest, and arguably many of the most annoying plot points have been put to bed. What it needed to settle, "The Greater Fool" did, albeit in the typically elephantine way this show tends to go about doing things.

Without turning this into a lengthy, repetitive missive on the entirety of The Newsroom's first season—presumably, you've already read enough of my ramblings to know where the problems typically lie—I'll simply say that "The Greater Fool" often embodied many of this show's least endearing qualities. Its propensity for melodrama in place of reasonable thought, its inability to make its female characters seem like anything other than ridiculous, flailing cartoons, its narrative dissonance between the brilliant news broadcast the characters seemingly think they're doing, and the Tea Party bash fest they're actually doing—all of it was there, front and center. But in tying up its loose ends, "The Greater Fool" managed to, at the very least, turn those problems into reasonably entertaining television. Even when I knew I was watching something kind of stupid, I usually laughed. I suppose that's better than nothing.

What we knew from last week's episode preview was that two things in particular would happen. One, Will would experience some kind of medical emergency, possibly of the self-inflicted variety. Two, we knew that the big conspiracy against Will would come to a head, with AWM head Leona Lansing at some point firing Will. Of course, there wouldn't be much of a Season 2 if Will were just kicked off the air—unless of course Season 2 was going to be all about getting Will back on the air, but I don't think anyone wanted to see that. Fortunately, things didn't go that way.

Starting with the aforementioned medical situation, we thankfully didn't have to sift through a big old suicide plot this week. As it turned out, a despondent Will simply accidentally took too many of his prescription antidepressants. He did so while drinking, and lamenting the hatchet-job cover story about him and News Night 2.0 in Newsweek. The same article Will commissioned to have written by Mackenzie's ex-boyfriend, in the hopes of having him become the young boy who told all the people about the valor and majesty of Camelot. Camelot is News Night, in case you missed it. You probably didn't, though, since Will spelled that metaphor out at least three times this week.

That all backfired, Will became depressed, and essentially gave himself a bleeding ulcer. Will spent much of this week recovering in the hospital and debating whether or not he should even bother to come back to News Night. He felt like the "greater fool" that the Newsweek article called him, and it took a rotating volley of News Night staffers (mostly headed up by Mackenzie) to eventually push him back to the news desk. But before he got there, he spent more time talking about Camelot, and Don Quixote, and basically feeling sorry for himself while bickering back and forth with a sassy nurse.

I don't mind saying that these sequences were, by and large, the funniest things in this week's finale. As much as Will continues to be a petulant dick in most situations—especially at the end of this week's episode—Jeff Daniels is why I keep coming back to this show outside of just having this assignment to write about it every week. No matter how many times Aaron Sorkin debases the character (last week's pants-putting-on debacle immediately springs to mind), Daniels sells this character far better than he has any right to. Even when I think Will is an abhorrent asshole, I still kind of love watching him be an abhorrent asshole. With perhaps the sole exception of Charlie—who really didn't have enough to do this season—I think Will is the only character on this show that truly, consistently works.

Which leaves us with the rest of the ensemble. I've been as critical as anyone about the Jim/Maggie/Don/Lisa quadrangle of idiocy, but I'll admit that even in spite of last night's ludicrous coincidences and moronic character behaviors, I breathed a small sigh of relief. To quickly recap, Maggie knew that Jim had come to her apartment last week to talk to her, not Lisa. Maggie told Lisa this, which Lisa was not happy about. Meanwhile, Don was considering inviting Maggie to move in with him, which Sloan halfway recommended he seriously, deeply consider, and not just because she apparently has a thing for him. Yes, now Sloan is even in on this nonsense, which came mostly out of nowhere and ended just as quickly, after Don ultimately invited Maggie to move in anyway. I don't know why we needed to toss yet another sexual complication into this office, but there we have it.

It's a shame, because Sloan has been one of the more intriguing, if underutilized characters this season. Olivia Munn has given Sloan a dignity that I'm not sure is even on the page, so it's troubling to see that she was mostly an afterthought late in the season. This week there were allusions to her leaving to work at some equity firm, but that was all abandoned at the end of the episode with one casual remark. Why even insert the tension if you're barely going to address it?

Which honestly speaks to the same problems I had with how the big honking conspiracy against Will played out. I think we all knew that Will, Mac, and Charlie would get the best of Leona and Reese somehow. Things looked a tad grimmer when Charlie's source decided to take a header off the Queensboro bridge, but a mysterious envelope sent to Charlie after his death seemingly put all the pieces together to let the News Night team blackmail AWM's higher-ups into letting them do the show their way. And Charlie even got their whole conversation—Reese admitting to phone hacking and all—on tape for posterity. Or, actually, because they never had the evidence at all. The envelope just contained a beef stew recipe, a callback to Charlie's last conversation with his informant. Oh, those sneaky News Night rapscallions!

With the Lansings in check and Will all hellfire and brimstone again, News Night did the show it'd been aching to do for 15 months. And what did that show amount to? A lot of intense, utterly unfocused bashing of the Tea Party.

Here's my thing. I don't care for the Tea Party one bit. I share nearly all of Sorkin's views on the subject, and in my own mind, hearing Will call them the American Taliban during his show resonated in a way that made me go, "Huh, yeah, there's maybe some truth to that." But the problem is that no "serious" newsman worth his salt would use such inflammatory language during a broadcast, unless he was just looking for quick, easy headlines. This is not discourse. This is exactly the kind of sound byte-y trash-talking that ideologue news anchors like Sean Hannity and Keith Olbermann use to whip people into a frenzy.

I see why Sorkin is going this route. He's essentially turned The Newsroom into a kind of political comfort food for those who find the Tea Party rhetoric deplorable. But therein lies the dissonance. Will and Mac want to make a real news program about real issues, but they're still talking in the same kind of incendiary platitudes everyone else uses. At the beginning of the broadcast, Will's takedown of voter ID laws passing in predominantly Republican-controlled state governments was absolutely brilliant. It was focused, tight, and broke down exactly why the laws are complete and utter nonsense. But then the broadcast just devolved into a long laundry list of why the Tea Party is a bunch of lying jerks, with no particular focus on any one subject matter. It was more rant than news broadcast.

That's too bad, because there are so many good ideas in The Newsroom. Rarely has a show with so much potential seemed so unable to completely make good on that potential. It will be interesting to see what criticisms Sorkin takes to heart when writing the next season, and which ones he chooses to ignore. It'll give us some insight into what he actually believes this show needs to be, versus what it ended up being as he attempted to lay the groundwork for the series.

For all my complaints about this episode, this season, and this show, I'll say this much for The Newsroom: It was never boring. Wary as I may be, a part of me is genuinely looking forward to Season 2 to see where things head. I don't know if that makes me an idealist, or a masochist. Maybe a bit of both.


What did you think of the finale, and the first season as a whole? Will you be tuning in for Season 2?



NOTES:


– I guess I'm not terribly surprised that Aaron Sorkin seemingly hates Sex and the City's idealistic portrayal of female single life in New York City. I just kind of wish he hadn't dragged Maggie into that whole thing, so as to maybe, just maybe, spare her the indignity of having to scream at a bus full of silly women (and Jim) about how messed up her life really is. But it happened, so there's nothing else to say except to at least compliment Alison Pill on making that cringe-inducing scene slightly less cringe-inducing. She's a wonderful actress, and I really hope Maggie sucks a lot less next season. I want her to be fun and likable, not insane and, well, more insane.

– Also, anyone else notice how quickly Maggie's hair dried from the moment she got splashed by the bus, to the moment where she and Jim finally kissed? Even with a hair dryer, I don't know any women whose hair dries that quickly. Hell, my hair doesn't dry that quickly, and I barely have any.

– So, does the semi-predictable return of sorority girl mean that we'll get to watch Will yell at her every week next season? That should be fun.

– Hope Davis's reappearances haven't lived up to her first interaction with Will, which is unfortunate because there's a potentially interesting character there. But with TMI now apparently being shut down, I'm not certain we're ever going to hear from her again. That's a shame.

– Neil is still alive, and at no point was assaulted by hordes of online trolls. Dammit.

– On the positive side, Terry Crews will apparently be back next season, which is great. He, like Sam Waterston and Olivia Munn, just didn't have enough to do this season. Maybe next year, we'll get the Terry-heavy episode the masses are clearly demanding.

– For what it's worth, it's been a pleasure writing up The Newsroom each week for you all. I know many of you out there have lamented my sometimes decidedly negative tone, and I hope you know that I haven't been ignoring the feedback. Positive or negative, I'm just glad people read my stuff and feel compelled to comment, and I do take your criticisms at face value. By the same token, I'd be remiss if I didn't give my honest opinion on the show week after week. We're not always going to agree, but, perhaps a bit like Will himself, my hope is that the conversation can remain respectful and thoughtful. Mostly it did, and I'm thankful for that.

Anyway, I had a lot of fun, and hopefully I'll be back around for the next season. Until then, I'm Alex Navarro. Good night.

Comments (65)
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Fantastic show, I am so glad someone finally puts the American media under the microscope. Some of the stuff they get away with is despicable. The fact that they fight this even lets me forget all the melodrama that The Newsroom could do without, in my opinion always a weakness with Sorkin's shows. Actually enjoyed the Sex in the city riff, a good end to an interesting show
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I basically felt the same way about this episode as I did most of the episodes this season. While not actually that good, it is somehow always enjoyable to watch. I may have said this last week (or maybe the week before, whatever), but that seems to be The Newsroom's biggest strength to me... creating fun television despite some bad writing. If I was to break it down and sort out all the stuff that actually happened, there'd be more than a few things that I disliked. Yet, it seemed to work because I enjoyed it... and I guess that's the ultimate purpose and goal.



Oh, and uh, I continue to love Olivia Munn / Sloan. Also, despite her oft-craziness and sometimes boring/annoying relationshippy stuff with Will, I seem to like Emily Mortimer / Mac, as well. I've come to accept her crazy-for-laughs personality.
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I'll be back for more next season.



Last episode I loved that Charlie got the best of Leona and Reese. Leona...always look inside the envelope. As a shrewd businesswoman you should know that. I had hoped that Reese would get the axe from Leona for his many screw-ups. Maybe next episode?
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I need to apologise to Olivia Munn.



After her Daily Show debacle and consequent appearances in the media I dismissed her as pointless and lightweight.



She's now almost the very best thing about this show. The show has focused almost entirely on lesser actors and lesser plot lines.



Olivia has done really well with the little she has been given. Impressive woman.
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Watching the foursome is like suffering thru a really bad soap opera on the off chance you'll catch the characters you really tuned in for (yes, I do think there were some good soaps). Thankfully, there's alot of other things going with this show and the melodrama is easily overlooked, most of the time. Newsroom has been on my must watch list since the Pilot for one reason - it makes me think. It doesn't hurt that I'm no Tea Party fan, but it's more than just the politics. It's about being constantly asked "What do you think?" or "Did you know that?'. I like television that expects you to know something, especially the news.

I'll be back for Season 2, can't wait
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I loved the show but I probably would not watch it if Jeff Daniels was not the lead character.

This is s typical Aaron Sorkin show, alot of dialogue to sift through. I did not llike the reference

to Sex and the City. I think he couldhave left that out but on the whole i enjoyed the season

finale and will look forward to season 2.
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I liked the finale but it definitely wasn't their best episode. I think it was downhill after Bullies. That said, it was an enjoyable episode. I liked the nod to the Sex and the City opening credits with Maggie getting splashed by the bus. I don't think the Sloan/Don tension was put to rest. I think he'll ultimately leave Maggie for Sloan.
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I actually agree with the review. The episode was kinda silly and cringe-worthy at times (well, a lot of times).



But it was still entertaining. While it's not even comparable but I am starting to have the same feeling towards this show as I do towards Falling Skies. There seems to be so much potential, but when I watch it I occasionally laugh at the show but it's still very entertaining. And reading the review and comments adds to the fun. So I say - Can't wait for season 2 ! :)
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I like the show. I'm not saying it's perfect by any means, but I like the spirit of it. If Sorkin was an unknown, someone that didn't have the West Wing to live up to, I doubt the show would have been judged so harshly.

I like the characters, and that most of them are flawed, but decent people trying to make the world better. There are so many shows out there that celebrate the worst qualities in people, The Newsroom makes me feel a little less cynical, and I think that's a good thing.
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Does anybody else think that Sorkin pretty much ripped off The Good Wife with Will's deleted voicemail thing?
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Didn't he rip off News of the World doing it in real life?
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:) True... but I meant the Will/Alicia - Will/Mac storyline.
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Thanks for the weekly recap of The Newsroom; I share many of the issues you have with the show, but it's been one of my favorites this summer. I hope that the next season will continue to mesh comedy and drama with slight adjustments to the portrayal of newsroom life. I saw the finale last night on my Hopper and was surprised that the episode didn't reveal the person threatening McAvoy. I've been able to save the season with more than enough hard drive space on my DVR for other shows. My coworkers at Dish like to talk about new episodes and the finale did wrap-up a number of storylines, but the love triangle turned into a trapezoid with Sloan throwing her affections in the ring!
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Am I the only one that was bothered by the fact that they revealed Mac was actually in the audience in the first episode. I think us knowing totally took all of the punch out of the scene when Mac revealed it to Will this week.



Overall that might be my big problem with the show. The constant reminders of things that have previously occurred or are currently occurring. I did not need to see that it was August 8, 2011 twice on my screen. Seeing it in the first scene and then using it as the mile marker for all that had come before it (Eight Days Earlier, Five Days Earlier, etc. ) means that I will know that the News portions are taking place on 8/8/2011. Its not just that, it was Will watching the debate on Youtube so we could see the girl again just in case we forgot about her over the course of nine episodes.



I might be in the minority, but I feel that the kind of people who watch an Aaron Sorkin series are the kind of people who are intelligent enough to keep a storyline straight despite time jumps and such. I remember when an episode if Studio 60 only used the costumes to denote whether an event was in the past of the present.



One more gripe is the female characters on the show. They are all pretty much terrible, with the exception of Lisa, Tess, Tamara (Read: Background Females). This is something I could understand if Sorkin had no experience writing a strong female character. Unfortunately he wrote a little play called "A Few Good Men" which was all about a women standing up for herself in the Male Centric Military. He wrote Dana Whitaker in Sports Night (Shoe Money Tonight) who is essentially the basis for Mackenzie just with all of the intelligence, brevity, wit, and competancy removed. CJ Cregg, Natalie Hurley, Harriet Hayes the list goes on and on.



Why is it that in the Newsroom he has seemingly forgotten how to write a strong female character?
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what was exactly taken out of context? please enlighten me... was it the role of religion in american constitution when there is none? was it in comparing poor people to wild animal life that breads out of control if you feed them? was it the control of women reproduction rights? this is not sometimes radical, this is straight down no limits fundamentalism that has borderline elements with fascism. thank you newsroom for having some decency to portray things as they are not sugarcoating them in journalistic mellow down jargon that is the america's media landscape of today. sad part is you can only see this as a fiction. and no one is worried. -.-



i do not like the little bits where they pathetically call on american patriotism (i.e. the bin laden episode or the last one) or the soap opera office romance, but at the end of the day this tv show, like the one in the series, has to have some ratings. but i can look pass that and see something that portrays all the challenges of working in the media public sphere that is both professional and socially responsible.
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I completely agree with this episode being a shameless, mean-spirited rant. Not that I don't consider the Tea Party (sometimes senseless, sometimes comical) radicals of the American political landscape, but what we saw was taking-out-of-context witch hunt, and what's worse, it defeats the entire premise of the series - well-researched important news. Furthermore, I'm dumbfounded by how politically correct and simply irritatingly inept these smart, brilliant people are in their personal lives -grow some actual balls, people! The only actually painfully realistic moment in this episode was Will's hospital visit. Smart people get depressed and stupid, it's how it is. Oh, and I think Will's character was miscast (sorry Jeff!). All in all, better that Studio 60, way way below West Wing or Sports Night. I'll stick around for the second season to see what the writing staff changes did to the show though...
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I hope next season has more about how news gets found/vetted/aired and soap-boxing by Will, and less office-romance, soap-opera telanovela stuff.
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here is a word of advice: do not write reviews about things you evalauate from the perspective of jersey shore or pokemon enthusiast. as a "defender" of journalistic values you missed out the point where he states ALL the things tea party does or say,and those things ARE fundamentalist. csllong the, crusader or talibans makes no much of a difference.



and this is excatly what bothers me in contemporary tv and contemporary tv critics. shallowness and narrowmindness that fails to see bigger historical and social moments being portrayed in shows like this. but you need to have a bit more knowledge that spurs beyond the world of carrie bradshow or two and a half man.



just leave this to somenone who knows what his writing about. :annoyed:
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Well, *I* caught that part and I still didn't like the way the message was delivered. Some people like to get their news without name calling or shouting. Something Newsroom promised to deliver, but failed to in the end. I thought the comparison to Keith Olberman was very good, because in the end Will turned into a moderate Republican version of Keith Olberman. If you have a valid argument (which they did with the Tea Party), then you shouldn't need to make incendiary statements to make your point.
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Exactally Krollo! I hope you read MY few statements located in the first several comments. Still, speaking of this, I am still hoping someone else noticed the "shift"! KUDOS!
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I loved the scene with Maggie getting soaked by the Sex and the City bus, just like in the series opening. I also love comfort food. There.
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Okay, now that's a god damn episode review right there. I've been critical of you but I gotta say, you made it right by me at least in this final review. You actually explained things, put some thought into this and your own opinions and convictions came forth, instead of just you know, seeming like it's just bashing for bashing's sake. Think it's the first time I can see what your perspective might be. And what do you know? I agree with you.



I love the show. I had a bit of hope that it would eventually not be so soapy, and even as you say, melodramatic. It does so many things right: the ideals it presents, the dialogue, the acting, the casting as well. This is why I suppose at the end of the day the show is simply worth watching despite the relative flaws.



It also has to be said, Jeff Daniels and Emily Mortimer have done a stellar job in the acting department. Their scenes, whatever the topic, are a joy to watch. I don't doubt for a second those two were, and still are in a way, a couple. Their back and forths are interesting, never dull.



Something I do disagree with you on, is on just the women being crazy and/or weaker characters. Take a good look at the males on this show. Does any of them sound sane? Don? Jim? Neil? Will? Neither of them sound sane to me. I'm not saying the women aren't crazy, I'm saying pretty much every character on this show is batshit insane. And I mean that in a good way. In the end, Will and Mac still have unresolved issues; Jim and Maggie went through an ordeal for falling for each other; Sloane is still single and awkward, so really, these women maybe crazy, but they don't have blissful lives either, they have to work for it. That has value for the characters as far as I can tell.



Well, I'm gonna miss this show. I hope it has a larger season next year, and I hope we can get along better over here. Even if we don't, do review your honest and hopefully thought out opinions. I'm glad someone does anyway.
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am i the only one who likes Neil
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No - Neil is a great character. He is smart, a little 'creative' and he has heart.
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Absolutely no.
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Yes.
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I absolutely love this show. This is the first season with only ten episodes. Have some patience critics and let this show grow. I am so sad that the first season is complete already. :(
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"He did so while drinking, and lamenting the hatchet-job cover story about him and News Night 2.0 in Newsweek. "



From what I saw in the hospital scene it was New York magazine, not Newsweek.
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Why do people love to bash this show? It's not because it's awful. It's not great, either, but it's not awful. The reason is that this show could be much better. We know Sorkin can write better than this. Sorkin definitely knows he can write better than this. The show was just...messy. It had a lot of good ideas and kind of threw them all against the wall and saw what stuck.

Maybe next season will be better.
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Who in their right mind would pick Maggie over Sloan?!
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Olivia Munn is fracking awesome.
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i'd pick lisa over maggie too. but yeah no one would ever pick anyone over sloane ...unless she too pulls out her eyelashes.
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I hate the love foursome! It really is ridiculous! And Sloan/Mann is killer!!!!!

I like this show, look at the other drivel on TV, say some good and bad things, but it is clearly in the top 50%

I know it is just TV, but it is a bit interesting to see the dynamics of possibly how a news show MIGHT be put together! it does seem like tireless work for all involved!

I look forward to season 2 quite a bit!!!!
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The tea-party bash fest is completely justified. This is the only show on TV (including actual news), that tells it how it is. They play real clips of real politicians saying moronic things, and then they counter said quotes with relevant facts. Yes, the melodrama is a tad on the overbearing side, but that's a flaw I'm willing to overlook in light of all the things it does right.
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In addition to the ones mentioned by la2marty and Tauros81 below, there's also Real Time with Bill Maher, and The Colbert Report.
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I guess you don't watch Rachel Maddow.
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I thought the Daily Show with Jon Stewart did that to some extent.
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Not just to some extent. That's the main point of the show. They spend about half the time of each episode on that. (The interview segment takes up most of the rest of the time).



Almost everything of that sort that we see on The Newsroom has been done on The Daily Show before. If it hasn't, it has probably been done on The Colber Report or Real Time with Bill Maher. So The Newsroom isn't the only show doing these things, it's just the only *drama* show doing these things.

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This show is great at pointing out the absurdities in news and politics. It's a bit sad that that's the only thing it does really well, but you know what? I think that's enough. I think that's more than a good enough reason to watch the show.
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"Also, anyone else notice how quickly Maggie's hair dried from the moment she got splashed by the bus, to the moment where she and Jim finally kissed?"



yep. first time i've seen that in a movie or tv show too. nice catch.
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I was more bothered by her shirt being wetter than it was after she had been initially splashed
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I thought the same thing during the season finale as I did during the pilot episode: I really wish this show was half as clever, funny, and witty as it thinks it is.
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It's extremely clever and witty and sometimes funny.
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We'll just have to agree to disagree. Personally I think that it's sometimes clever, witty, or funny. But definitely not as often as the writers think it is. To you it usually is. That's fine.
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You have a photo of "The Office" attached to your account - it's funny that the things you are saying about The Newsroom are the same way I feel about The Office! Haha.
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I'd agree with you about The Office right now (and for the past several years), the picture is from six years ago when I first signed up. I just never pay attention to people signatures and am too lazy to change it.



Actualy I lied, I have more issues with The Newsroom because it promises to be something big and important and fails to completely deliver, whereas everyone knows The Office is just a comedy stringing it along for money at this point.
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There were times this season that I thought I had enough of this show, with the very prolonged and I think unnecessary love plot lines between Maggie and Jim, when they had the drawn out Coldplay montage and some of the out of place comedic moments that would fit in to a Two and a Half Men episode. But the thing that kept me coming back was Jeff Daniels when he was behind the desk on air. The delivery by Daniels was something you just don't see on news anymore, he cared about what he was saying and made great points about real world issues that like you said about calling the Tea Party Americas Taliban would never be said on real news, but it has a point and this is the kind of show that should be saying it. I loved McAvoys hate of what the republican party has become it is something that has pissed me off the last 10 years, taking advantage of the Christian faith who are usually poor to get them into power to help the rich folk of the USA. This show unlike pretty much any show I've seen before made amazing points about real world issues, like the photo ID law past in republican states today that it seems alot of news networks now are scared to use and all these things that have been brought up are factual (apart from the Americas Taliban) which was quite out of place. Overall I really enjoyed this series it was my first Sorkin series and the dialogue between characters has been superb, Olivia Munns character has been great and I love how she is so annoyed that her segments on the debt ceiling weren't changing any polls of Americas understanding of it.

I take it we would have to wait another year if they bring this series back for a 2nd season, which will most probably be alot about the upcoming election. Which we be very interesting.

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Overall I give The Newsroom a C+ for it's first season mainly due to how the female characters are written. If there is one thing I need in my TV shows it's at least one strong female character. That is what The Newsroom is lacking, Mac or even Sloan should be the voice of reason, voice of calm, voice of sense, but they aren't. They are - as you said - cartoons. I'll tune in next season in hopes Sorkin can agree his female characters need tweaking.



And am I the only person that has no interest in all the relationship-y drama? I like this show best when it's about a Newsroom. Believe it or not. Not "will they won't they"s when they obviously won't.
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I think you're being generous...you know what I give this show?



An F+



*CLICK*

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JWCBJ5m-CZE
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I would like to know why you did not write your article, leave it overnight, read it over ( have somone else read it over!), and THEN submit it? Yes, you did "ramble on". What happened to sentense structure, paragraph structue, and common sense? There IS a story in the background. One, I will add, that changed direction after the first half of the season. Would anyone else like to comment on this?
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Also, I'm not a fan of Sex in the City... but I laughed my BUTT off when the bus scene happened. The theme music playing and then drenching poor Maggie. Then her little melt down. It was hilarious.
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Well, considering they condensed what should be a 1hr news show into maybe 5-10 minutes of clips in the HBO show... of course it looked scatter-shot. I would imagine that, if it occurred in real life, that each segment would be broken into 5/10 minute chunks. One about the US != Christianity, another for the herd mentality, etc. Instead, we got glorified clips to show us that Will went after them full force.

One guy I was speaking to the other week was like "of course the Debate they wanted wasn't accepted... Will went through everyone in 30 seconds." Completely ignoring the fact we were just seeing bits and chunks, and it probably went on for 10minutes or something until the guy blew a gasket.
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My biggest issue with the show is that it tried to claim that it wasn't biased and all it did was use biased talking points and parade them as fact. Be honest about what you are... hypocrisy is just maddening and it's hard to watch the show because of that. However, as much as anyone agrees or disagrees with the political ideology, the show overstepped the line with the "American Taliban" bull. I don't care what political party you belong to, unless you are out blowing up cars and shooting civilians to instill terror into your enemies, not on of our major parties is even close to that label. It was childish and stupid and showed the maturity of Sorkin. Completely classless...



The characters allowed me to ignore most of hat problem until the last few episodes really kicked the idiocy into overdrive with Will, Lisa, Jim, Maggie, McKenzie, Neal and now even Sloan. This show has done a pretty good job of making it hard to cheer for any of these people anymore.



Between the classless disatribe, the idiotic troll storyline, and the unlikeable characters... there just isn't any reason to watch this show anymore. SUch a pity too... that first episode was a truly great hour of television. Ah.. what might have been *sigh*
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It's not that far fetched of a metaphor. Will listed all of those bullet points before saying the "big T" word for a reason. Each one of those things he said right before the "T-bomb" were ALL things that we hate that the Taliban ideology encompasses, and yet people are fine with the Tea Part doing exactly the same thing. Taking religion to the extreme and trying to make it run their government, bullying everyone that might step in front of them, etc.

Granted, afaik that Tea Party hasn't bombed anything or directly killed anyone. Hence the metaphor. In some ways, it's just doing the opposite of that West Wing episode: where they said "The Taliban don't represent their country or their religion, the same as the KKK does not represent the USA or Christianity."
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Just in case someone mis-reads my sarcasm, my "afaik... hasn't killed anyone" line was in jest. Just trying to lighten the mood
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On the last note.. You did good Alex Navarro. Looking forward to the next season of the show and your reviews.
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He did NOT do well. Worst reviewer on this website. It's clear that he does not like the show, so he just rambles on about the problems of the show (most of which aren't half as bad as he makes them out to be). He might do well reviewing shows that he actually likes, but I've only seen him review the Newsroom and he did NOT do well.
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HAHA! You think he'll actually be reviewing this show in Season 2. That's funny.
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Any episode that contains 30 sec+ of Baba o'Riley is instantly amazing. I didn't really like the Jim/Maggie/Don/Lisa/Sloan (I kind of saw the Sloan-Don thing, not that strong, but I saw some hints of it) resolution, or the return of the girl that asked the question, those were even cheesier than the show uses to be. But I loved the Mac/Will thing from the first episode with the cards, I really liked that resolution.



Really looking forward to next season, part of me wants Sorkin to tweak it into a show with better relationships and slightly less Tea Party bashing, (which I agree with, but The Daily Show's already joked about most of that stuff) but I also really want to see what a second season of Studio 60 would look like, and season 2 of this would be as close as possible.
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Yeah when they had the soriority girl talk with McKenzie I thought she was going to say she made her ask the question "Why is America the greatest country on earth" to Will, but no she just wanted a Internship.
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