A tabloid journalist interviews the city room staff for a feature on the Tribune. The resulting article paints a pretty negative picture, undermining the Tribuneï¿½s trustworthiness just when it has a scoop about a politicianï¿½s personal problems.moreless
The Tribune staff has an exhausting day covering a tunnel collapse, a "human fly" trying to scale a skyscraper, predictions of an alien UFO landing, and Art mulling over an offer to go to work for the governor.moreless
After Animal risks his life to get a photograph, Lou discovers that he is a Vietnam veteran who is still haunted by his experiences. Lou commissions more stories about the difficulties faced by Vietnam vets, and tries to get Mrs. Pynchon to reach out to hire more of them at the paper.moreless
Visiting a school guidance counselor to help pick a group of Tribune scholarship winners, Lou learns about the eruption of violence in such inner-city schools, but is shocked when she is beaten and raped by two students. Billie and Rossi work on a background story.moreless
Billie gets upset when her story of the murder of an 'ordinary' African American mother gets buried on page 26 opposite the shipping news, while Rossi's upbeat feel-good story of an elderly white lady who beat up some attackers gets front page treatment.moreless
Lou is feeling unusually tired as he helps a copy boy who is trying to become a reporter, and has to fire a promising intern who impishly inserted a fake award into a list of awards. Then a routine checkup reveals that Lou has cancer of the thyroid, which requires immediate surgery.moreless
When the Trib receives a request from the CIA to stop investigating two young men arrested for drug dealing, the staff comes to suspect that there is a CIA informant in their midst.moreless
Because of his disrespectful attitude toward a city supervisor, Rossi is pulled from covering the man's re-election campaign and replaced by a female reporter. But when she comes up with scoops, Rossi suspects that she has become romantically involved with the politician she is supposed to be covering.moreless
Charlie Hume and his wife are upset about their son Tommy's conversion to the Hare Krishna religion, but have second thoughts after hiring a "de-programmer" to kidnap him. Meanwhile, Rossi and Billie do a story on such religious cults.moreless
Lou tries to help Earl, the local newsstand owner, when an urban renewal project threatens to destroy his building... along with the artwork he painted directly on his room's walls.
When a gubernatorial candidate is saved from an assassination attempt by an anonymous bystander, Rossi identifies the man and writes a story about him that reveals a hidden conviction for armed robbery in his past. This causes the hero to lose business clients, as well as his girlfriend. Meanwhile, Billie's story on a struggling halfway house for women newly released from prison gains sympathy from Mrs. Pynchon.moreless
When the Tribune's sports department refuses to cover the UCLA football team's recruitment scandals, Lou steps in, but he meets unexpected resistance from a columnist whom he has long admired.
Without telling anyone, Rossi has himself checked into a mental hospital to gather information on patient abuses, and then has trouble getting out. Meanwhile, Lou becomes concerned that fear of litigation is causing the Tribune to censor its news reporting.moreless
Billie and Rossi have problems trying to cover the news in a timely fashion. Billie keeps taking too long to verify her stories and misses the deadline, whereas Rossi keeps turning them in too soon and getting the facts wrong.moreless
A gunman takes the Tribune newsroom hostage, ordering Rossi to rewrite his story about the man's brother, who was supposedly killed by a store owner while committing a robbery.