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The Newsroom S02E04: "Unintended Consequences"


Is it swagger or laziness to have a character wish aloud for a "preposterous stroke of luck" concerning the introduction of information that would allow a season-long storyline to advance? The exclamation from Jerry Dantana in tonight’s "Unintended Consequences" came seconds before OWS representative/News Night guest/sacrificial lamb Shelly Wexler coincidentally stepped out into the ACN hallway with a tip related to Dantana’s pursuit of the infamous Black Ops controversy. Sure, happenstance plays a part in real life all the time. Also, to have an established media entity like ACN be dependent on a routinely dismissed group such as OWS for what would become the most watched program in broadcast history is a clever dynamic to introduce. This otherwise strong episode similarly hinged on a small, unlikely story convenience. The annoying presence of a ruptured fourth wall (made more so with Hallie’s later reference to a hotel snafu as a "predictable plot twist") kept this installment from reaching its full potential and pointed to The Newsroom's flaws of self-awareness.  


On the emotional front was Maggie, framing "Unintended Consequences" with her turn in the deposition chair. The last time Rebecca Halliday appeared to draw out a character's story and give an episode structure was in the season opener, with charmingly efficient results. Marcia Gay Harden is doing a fine job with what little screen time she gets ("Then FUCK you..."), and hopefully as the show moves forward, these legal scenes will appear more frequently. The characters on The Newsroom can come off a little larger than life, and an outsider's examination of such a sobering case reminds us that they all have, within them, toned-down personalities.  


The subject of this meeting was whether or not Maggie had enough mental health to function as a credible witness, and whether a general involved with the use of chemical weapons had stated that "it happened." So anyway, she finally went on her trip to Africa and made a connection with a child named Daniel at an orphanage, by reading to him a ton of times. During an overnight assault, gunmen shot the poor kid in his spine, effectively saving Maggie’s life, but ending the boy's. Throughout their connection, Daniel had become enamored with her blonde hair, and this memory disturbed her enough that she chopped it all off and dyed it red. It was only after she returned home that Maggie learned the cattle bandits were in pursuit of Gary Cooper’s camera, causing her to feel extremely guilty for even fighting so hard for the story in the first place. Not that the circumstances of a child’s death need to reach a certain standard to psychologically damage a person, but this particular incident seemed especially devastating.  

Such is the story of Maggie's Raggedy Ann-meets-a-weedwacker haircut. 


Back in the office, Dan and Neal had hit a wall in contacting @Hamni8 and then theorized all the many reasons as to why the Twitter handle had ceased reporting on the military assault that was discovered at the end of last week’s episode: a lack of cell phone minutes, death, and even more unlikely, a government shutdown of the internet. As they hoped out loud for something to fall into their laps, exactly just that happened, as if Sorkin himself had parted the clouds and separated the real world from the fantasy to help out the News Night mortals, as if he were some sort of Olympian god. No sooner had Dantana expressed consternation than did people's champ Shelly Wexler nonchalantly suggest that someone down at Zuccotti Park was part of a non-governmental organization (NGO) that'd experienced an organizational shutdown by the Pakistani government. Said OWS dude/campfire attendant wrote a report that U.S. troops used chemical weapons on civilians. Awesome! Just the scoop they’d been waiting for. 


Unfortunately, after a shameful interview with Will McAvoy on News Night wherein Will behaved as glibly as hell while Wexler floundered under a line of questioning related exclusively to the vague goals of her group, she was too offended to offer up her lead. Appeals by Neal brought Shelly to a compromise: She’d pony up the intel goods in exchange for an on-air apology from Will. Obviously Will wasn’t hearing it, so Mac sent Sloan, and then eventually Don, to smooth over the situation. Both encounters ended with the ACN employees insulting Wexler, and comedically highlighting McAvoy’s initial criticism of OWS. In refusing to acknowledge the current power structure, the fledgling movement faced an insurmountable first hurdle: How could they ever achieve change, in all their varied goals, if they were unwilling to support the source of power in place to effect it? 

Wexler criticized Sloan and Don’s motives, they criticized right back, and all hope for an understanding was lost. That is, until the mighty Will finally emerged from the shadowed wings of this episode and apologized on a personal level.  Ah Will, he always knows just what to say and how to say it. If only he could get over himself first! Argh! The two shared a heart-to-heart, mostly about how he was in a bad place and needed some emotional healing from his "crisis of confidence." She took the bait like all females on this show do and forgave him for being so damn charming. Oh, also the news team had already contacted the guy without her ("Leon Deet"), so her role in this episode was ultimately rendered even less important. 

Miles away from all the concerned New York looks and globe-trotting traumatic orphanage experiences, Jim faced his own failures and successes out on the road: failure in the form of a slew of setbacks following last week’s bus stunt and success in scoring a poolside smooch from Hallie. The latter came at the cost of his gig on the road, after having finally tricked his way into that much sought-after 30-minute sit-down with Romney ("Go fuck yourself..." —Taylor), at which point he handed the chance over to Hallie. Hey, her boss was a real dick! Jim’s been screwing off out there pretty much anyway, and he’s way too talented to be parroting Romneybots while Mac and the gang could really use his savvy back home.  

So all in all, an enjoyable episode! (Except for the part where characters got to wish parts of the the plot into being.)


FOLLOW-UP QUESTIONS:

– Is Occupy Wall Street legit?

– What was your favorite joke?

– Do you think characters joking about "Gary Cooper" is funny?

– Did Rick Perry lose because of his association with a ranch that had a racist name?

– What was your favorite storyline in this episode?

– Who is your favorite character on this show?

– What news from 2011 do you wish Sorkin would address?

– (Not a question): "Stillman's your first name?"

Previously Aired Episode

AIRED ON 12/14/2014

Season 3 : Episode 6

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Love that the idiotic psychopaths on here are ASKING FOR MORE BRUTALITY. Yeah, lets make murdering children a regular thing on TV. That wont affect societies insensitivity to violence at all! R*tards. Go back to your basement and ask your hostages to put the lotion on the skin. Im sure you imbeciles take notes from that movie :)
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My only comment is not really a criticism of you but of everyone who knows Aaron Sorkin makes this show. Is there any way all of you can distance yourself from hatred/loathing/dismissing the man? The rest of your review was fine. I just get tired of everyone beating on/blaming Aaron Sorkin for every scene and every idea expressed on this show. It's similar to every comment page on every tv show on the air, in a way, though - if you are not extreme right wing you are called a retarded liberal. Most people know the most stupid backward white trash people in the world are extremist right-wing creatures. It ain't pretty, but it's right. I really like this show, and wish it were on more. It's not political, it's human, and smart, and that's rare in today's TV land. It's too long between what now passes for "seasons," though. Who knew a mere 5 years ago that 8-10-13 episodes would be accepted by the viewers as a season from the 22-24-25 they were then.
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Halfway through the finale, trying to savor it, as I know that Season 2 is not as good. But............the nurse's great aunt can't vote because she doesn't have a driver's license? Huh?

Is Tennessee different than NY? My mother doesn't have a driver's license but the DMV gives her a picture ID to use for purposes of a picture ID.

So. Is Tennessee backwards or something, or did Sorkin get it all wrong?

Just talking to myself here, not to worry, it's obvious no one cares about this show.

Probably because it's light years more brilliant than Dexter.
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http://www.timesfreepress.com/news/2011/oct/05/marriage-certificate-required-bureaucrat-tells/

Dorothy Cooper is 96 but she can remember only one election when she's been eligible to vote but hasn't.
The retired domestic worker was born in a small North Georgia town before women had the right to vote. She began casting ballots in her 20s after moving to Chattanooga for work. She missed voting for John F. Kennedy in 1960 because a move to Nashville prevented her from registering in time.
So when she learned last month at a community meeting that under a new state law she'd need a photo ID to vote next year, she talked with a volunteer about how to get to a state Driver Service Center to get her free ID. But when she got there Monday with an envelope full of documents, a clerk denied her request.
That morning, Cooper slipped a rent receipt, a copy of her lease, her voter registration card and her birth certificate into a Manila envelope. Typewritten on the birth certificate was her maiden name, Dorothy Alexander.
"But I didn't have my marriage certificate," Cooper said Tuesday afternoon, and that was the reason the clerk said she was denied a free voter ID at the Cherokee Boulevard Driver Service Center.
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5/1, also a very good episode. And it took controlling all of my gag reflexes to not fast forward past Honda, Jane H., since Sam Waterston (what an actor) was in the same scenes.

Interesting bit about the NSA, don't you think?

But ouch, this show has routinely gotten barely 50 comments here since it began. Why do moronic shows like Dexter get more attention and tons more comments? For the same reason that Will keeps mentioning, that the American people really LIKE the Housewives consortium of ........... garbage? Poor sods in America don't like to be made to think, or, perish the thought, hear the truth about their evil (both sides) political demagogues? My guess is yes.

I do have to admit though, now having seen the past episodes, I wish they hadn't had EyesTooClose go to Africa. Not a good direction, Sorkin.

At any rate, if this show were on Starz, it would have been canceled by now.
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More like they are tired of hearing about it. Americans these days are generally bitter and depressed over the state of the government and thus prefer to ignore it. It's even a popular mindset to preach, South Parks infamous douchebag vs turd sandwich episode shows this off.

It's kind of an ignorant view but sometimes I agree with it. Don't get me wrong, I love Newsroom and what it's doing, but how do you cause effective decisive change in america at this point without sparking revolution and organized revolts. They put down peaceful protests and don't even cover them on the news, they hide revolts around the world, and the amount of propaganda fed to the media is palpable.

I believe that a fall is eminent. I don't want one, but I don't really see how it is avoidable.
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Still slogging through - Olivia Munn is very pretty and a very competent actor, too bad she wasn't given the part that EyesTooClose was. And she speaks Japanese! Nice episode, Bullies.

Good show.
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Is there a technical Q&A on TV.com? When typing, my cursor moves to first character in a post all on its own.

Anyone else have this problem? TYIA.
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Despite all the polemic.. really good episode, great show!
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I think the scene where the kid dies was badly directed and thats why a lot of people feel a bit disappointed about how the Maggie storyline ended. It should have been a big emotional moment for the audience considering it was built up to be a life changing trip for Maggie but I was genuinley confused about what happened and how the kid was even shot. The slow-mo of Gary Cooper dropping the camera and Maggie watching, the faint gunshot as they got on the bus, Maggie reading the book for the kid and then he's just dead. Thats what killed the story for me. I had to watch it again to understand what happened. I knew something was coming but it was badly done imo.
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My thought exactly! I was so confused during that part, it didn't seem like the kid got shot at all? No yelp or pain inscribed on his face... just "again" (asking Maggie to read the book...well, yeah, again) and then suddenly lifeless on the bus floor. Initially I thought Gary got shot. So just as Maggie lied about only reading Daniel the story three times, he didn't die immediately after, but sometime during the 45th reading of the book cuddled up on the bus (making it that much more devastating for Maggie)?
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Ooooph, badly directed - spot on.

In copying (a bad homage?) M*A*S*H (anyone remember when it was done well?), those who don't remember the original get to see a bad copy.

Enough. Get back in the newsroom and do what you do well - a soapy soap.

Shoulda, coulda been a big emotional moment, but instead it was a yawn. I thought Gary Cooper was killed, tres confusing, badly done all around.
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I appreciate you putting that into words; that is a totally valid criticism from a perspective I wouldn't be able to get to on my own. I'm not very artistic or visual and only had this vague sense of incompleteness about the scenes and Maggie's recounting of the incidents.
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It is hard for you to believable when you continue the call the network AVN when it is ACN
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Staff
WHoooooooooops. fixed.
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I'm excited to watch Team Genoa try to defend themselves against Team Smug. Too bad we already know what the outcome will be.
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To me, the core issues here are: a) research, and b) smugness. At the very core of every journalist's work is research, research, and research again. We have three, no four threads here: the (alleged) use of chemical weapons, the importance (or not) of OWS, questioning the Romney campaign, and the trip to Africa. All four are treated quite differently, but all touch the basics of journalism. What is the truth, how you you find it, and, importantly for a journalist, how do you treat it? How does it affect the reporter? How is the issue clouded, or not, by the journalist personally?
Secondly, smugness. It's difficult for liberals in the US, when confronted with the pomposity, and sometimes outrageous ignorance, of the American right, NOT to respond with smugness. Never the twain shall meet. Of course, the show pokes fun at itself by being smug...

The Wexler coincidence was just funny. "Wait, what?!?" Let it slide.

Best joke? "I can't ignore evidence. It's not like I'm in Congress." Brilliant throwaway line.

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The funny thing about your statement is that Will, the smuggest of the smug, self-identifies as a conservative Republican.
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I've read your comments and I'm wondering why no one mentioned Sloan's "I'll never let go, Kodak... I'll never let go..."
Or a fact that people who were sent by McKenzie to fix Hallie situation made it even worse (Neal: "Yeah. No. Sloan was smug")
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Yeah, she's only about how many years too late?

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Completely apart from just accepting the lowest probability coincidences there's at least two other possibilities as to what happened that invalidate the argument above regarding writers giving their characters what they need at the time of need: 1) They didn't get just what they needed when they needed it, but got the opposite of that, so instead we'll find out its a ham-fisted attempt at irony? or 2) It's a set up.
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Answers:

+ To this day, you sadly still cannot take OWS as seriously as, said, the Tea Party. If you truly want to change the system, you have to be part of it.

+ Don - "I too believe Will and Sloan can be a little smug, and I think you guys are showing a lot of wisdom by having me be the one to fix it" Neal - "You really the only one left" "The only guy for the job!" "The only one left" "The only one who can get it done!" "There's nobody else" "Nobody but me!" "Left... in the office" "One man..."
+ For some reason, it was funny here.
+ N*gger Ranch most probably didn't help, but Perry mostly lost because he is a completely unredeemable idiot.
+ For once, there were no weakling to find here - even the Jim/Hailie storyline was interesting this week. A very solid episode, in my book.
+ I identify more with Jim than with any other characters on that show, mainly because I can easily relate to his bat-sh*t crazy women trouble. And Will, obviously, is the most awesome Republican since Lincoln.
+ Absolutely no idea
+ ... And then, his last name is actually Frank?

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Jeez some of you people are coldhearted. Maggie's story is sad, it is terrible and you would be traumatized by it if it was you.
If they had done story where she was kidnapped and brutally raped you'd all be bitching about how over the top it was.
Maggie felt responsible for the death of that boy, if she hadn't gone there, hadn't missed their chance to head back to Entebbe in daylight, or spoken the language of the raiders this little boy would still be alive, this little boy she made a very personal connection with.
If that happened to you and you didn't end up being badly affected then you really are a cold bastard.
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I hear what your saying but, there's more to it than just seeing a kid die. Maggie was essentially responsible for the kids death, simply by being there and filming. Remember the bad guys wanted the camera. She was piggybacking the kid when he was shot. That bullet was meant for her.
I was expecting more, same as you, kidnapped for awhile or even raped. Leading up to this episode I thought Gary was going to die, until the lawyer said I can't wait to meet him.
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I found the Maggie storyline ridiculously disappointing. In the first episode Will said "Counsel, if what happened to her happened to you, you’d kill yourself for the rest of your life" and followed it up with "You would sit in the middle of a room and cry forever" - and then what we get is that she saw someone die? SERIOUSLY? She went to Africa! Can you even imagine what kind of horrors she could've run into? ...Well, apparently the writers couldn't. I mean, come on! Give me genocide! Give me kidnappings! At least give me a little starvation! Her issue is that she saw a little black boy, who she'd known for LESS THAN A DAY get shot? She lives in New York, right? Couldn't she just do that at home? This is some weak shit, Sorkin. Weak. I mean, the sight of someone dying? That's what makes her lose her shit like that? If everybody had her reaction, then shouldn't a lot more people paint their hair a weird orange color and moan about their lost sanity forever? I mean that's gotta be a significant percentage of the population of not only 3rd World countries, but places like Detroit and Chicago, as well. What an underwhelming conclusion to such a promising storyline.
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Wow you don't sound inane and heartless at all... Right, bcs you can't establish a relationship with someone in less than a day. I get that for people like you it takes waaaaaaaay longer if at all, but someone like cute adorable kids who want you to read them a story. And how would you know how long she spent? The story arc barely had time to establish that... and if you could actually LISTEN you'd realize that she said she wasn't that traumatized but it could be that she felt guilty or something. Maybe she changed her hair bcs she frickin felt like it dumba**... She can deal with things however the F she wants. Ugh you sound so ignorant. Seriously your comment is just so bad and asinine. Learn to contextualize bcs this show seems too highbrow for you...
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Excellent post, pebermynthe.

I agree. But since I accept this show (only because of its fairly good writing and very good acting, outside of Maggie The Boring) as a soapy soap in a newsroom, I can continue to watch.

>>>I mean, the sight of someone dying? That's what makes her lose her shit like that? If everybody had her reaction, then shouldn't a lot more people paint their hair a weird orange color and moan about their lost sanity forever?

So true. If so, she doesn't have the stones to be a reporter, much less a field reporter, or whatever it is she is.

I have been catching up from the beginning, and it's so obvious this show is Fantasyland in a newsroom, it's laughable. News men and women don't CARE, people. If they did, they couldn't do their jobs any more than a surgeon could. And we know surgeons don't care. Speaking of which, Will's gf called him out on ALL his sudden gf's in episode whatever, and one of them was a brain surgeon. Sloppy writing.

At least HBO is giving this soapy soap a chance to stay on the air. Might it get moronic like Dexter? Oh sure. Will it be cancelled like all the good shows on STARZ? No. Is it worth watching if you know in advance that:

-news will happen in TV time that happened in history;
-writers will interject their own personal biases on that news, yes of course Palin is a moron;
-characters will make concerned faces and yell a lot and talk about inappropriate workplace conversations in front of everyone - really, a Valentine's Day date comes to the man's WORKPLACE to chew him out? Come onnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn - and everyone will just stare blankly and shrug unless they're an extra in which case they will do nothing;
-the guy in the control room (Herb?) will continue to have a nice voice;
-it will continue to be a premium channel show that we overpay for and watch;
-some of the stars and writers will get awards and make lots of money;
-Waterston will do what he does best, overact and do a darned good job of it;
-Newsroom will wipe the floor with Enlightened and Dexter.

The answer: yes.


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Are you serious? I try to be a good citizen on the net, but your utter lack of compassion has pushed me toward a less than polite place. I'll save all the name calling but know it is with serious prejudice. What is underwhelming for me is your lack of humanity and callous disregard for both human life and the facts. It seems obvious that you've never spent any time in the developing world and like too many people you feel too far removed from that reality to remove your head from your anus, dig deep and concern yourself with something outside the microcosm of your existence.

That sweet little boy, Daniel, took a bullet meant for Maggie and then died in her arms. A bullet that only came into play because cattle raiders had heard there was an expensive camera and two Americans sitting at the orphanage. Maggie is devastated because that boy died in her place, but more so because the situation would never have happened if she and Gary had not insisted on going on what was an otherwise pointless trip. Unless you are a complete sociopath, the guilt of that is going to eat you alive for a long time. It wouldn't be surprising for Maggie to be walking around with PTSD and battling her triggers from that experience for the remainder of her life. And who are you, anyway, to make light of how another person processes trauma? From where I sit, you are the person who has not yet experienced anything close to this incident you belittle as not traumatic enough, and I hope for your sake you never do, but if it happens you may yet realize what an awful sense of irony karma has.

I realize this is television in debate, that I'm getting my back up over someone complaining that this fiction was not entertaining enough, but what does it say about you, about us as a people, when you need to see genocide, kidnap and/or torture in order to feel properly entertained? I've never before been one to give any credence to the factions of people complaining that television is too violent, but you, your comments, today, have given me some insight into their arguments. Your lack of compassion and empathy is horrifying, and your bloodthirsty voyeuristic desire for violence, mayhem and tragedy is nauseatingly distasteful. When Will and Mac rail against the horror show of entertainment that the news has become, you are part of the audience they are not sorry to lose. Congratulations, this week you made yourself the butt of Aaron Sorkin's grand jibe and you were too dense to even realize.
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Wooow - Okay then. Well, not to mess with your presumptuous image of me, but from the age of seven, I've spent a significant part of my life in third world countries, including a month in a closed off military dictatorship, but don't let that ruin your preconceived notion of me.

Besides that I spend a large part of my spare time every week being a volunteer for Danish Refugee Help (I don't know the exact English name). But you're right - I am obviously completely oblivious to the world and suffering in general, right? The reality is that my issue with the storyline was NOT that I am a wildly far-removed, unemotional, unfeeling sociopath. It's that they had a unique opportunity to show some of the world's worst crimes by far, the most horrific ones, the ones we forget because it's so far removed, but the ones we have to remember. And yet given the opportunity they gave us the most pedestrian of crimes - murder. Of course it's tragic. And children dying is always horrible. But a number of children in Africa are currently being kidnapped, some are being forced into being child soldiers, some are raped, some are slaughtered in droves.

The saying is "One death is a tragedy, a thousand deaths is a statistic" - Sorkin had an opportunity to show us the statistic, the masses of suffering. And he failed.

And it's not that I wanted genocide to be entertained. I wanted a mainstream show to show us genocide or at least some suffering, because it's happening, and no one is talking about it.

It sounds like I've somehow ruined your view on the world and humanity in general, but I am not a bad person. I spend time with people who've been around some really bad people, and it seems insane to me that the sheer suffering they've been through, doesn't reverberate round the world.

That doesn't mean I don't completely understand that the situation shakes up her entire world. Let her be sad - for God's sake, yes! But they're all acting like she was there for the holocaust. Someone died and it was awful. It was a child so it was all the more devastating. But that is life. People die. Death is a constant, and if everyone completely broke down every time people they knew peripherally died, then the world would stop working tomorrow. And before you get all "You just don't know death, you soulless monster!" you should know that your predicted ironic karma struck early, but thanks for the nice words - you've really got me beat in the 'compassionate' category. Good for you! You're right! It makes perfect karmic sense that someone incredibly close to me died way too young! After all I said something bad in a comment on a review years later. That serves me right. Or her I guess, she really had it coming for having known me.

Death is always awful and it affects us all differently - that doesn't mean it makes awesome sense that she chopped of her hair, then dyed it a lovely shade of 'carrot', never mind the fact that she's hopped up on medication, apparently lied about something later on, because she was stoned out of her mind and hallucinating all kinds of weird shit.

But, yeah. You're right. I'm a total dickhead for expecting a little focus on the suffering in Africa besides "dead little black boy who died trying to protect the blonde American". I don't know what I was thinking. Shame on me.
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LMAO sure, you sound ignorant enough to think you make any sense but you wanna lie about the fact that youve been somewhere as if that even matters? How inane... Also, if a cute kid dying ISNT enough for you to care about the sh*t that happens around the world, then obviously youre a frickin emotionless sociopath, dingus... what, do you need kids screaming and their heads cut off for you to care? They did have the opportunity to show that. BUT THEY DIDNT HAVE TO. They showed a HUGE FRICKIN PROBLEM just by having the scene where the adorable children SCREAM AT A CAMERA THINKING IT WAS A GUN. Like f*ck, how does that not shake you? Just that scene alone you can tell how bad the situation is for them. Also, it shows that even in areas you don't expect issues, you can never predict that it wont be. So it DOES raise awareness of problems. Problems even at a remote orphanage. God you're an imbecile. Get yourself checked...
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I realize I should be a grown up about your inane comments and follow Callahan's principle on behavior that tells us that one cannot argue with stupid, but I went ahead and wrote a long reply anyway.

I'll go ahead and do that. You're right. This show is too highbrow for me, it's only for people like you, who've clearly got their shit together. I realize that you think my comment makes me a monster, and surely I have to accept your expert opinion, because boy, based on your wording, grammar, vocabulary and spelling, you seem so reasonable and trustworthy. I stand by that comment. The murder rate -especially for young black boys- is insane where she comes from. Meaning New York. If you're a young black man living in Chicago or Detroit you have a higher chance of being shot or going to jail, than you have at finishing high school. If Sorkin wanted to focus on a problem, and wanted her to witness the murder of a young black boy, why not start at home, with the problems there? If you go to the trouble of setting up a story on the inhumanities and atrocities in Africa, why not actually follow through and show some of the real problems? Human trafficking, child brides, totalitarian regimes, they could've done so many interesting things. And to your point about not understanding that she's sad - I get it. I literally volunteer with refugees every week, and I've been doing that for the last four years. They're from Iraq, Syria, Somalia and other fun places. I mostly sit with children. Some I see regularly, some I see only once, just for a little while. If you think my heart wouldn't break, if something were to happen to one of them, you're insane. I would be devastated and I would probably be a little broken for a while. So you know what, yeah. I do care. I care enough to listen to a teenage girl whose friend went back to Syria to join ISIS, has since gotten home to Denmark again, and is now a completely changed and at times scary person. You think the worst thing people who come from these parts of the world have seen is one boy get shot?
Murder is sad, a dead child is a tragedy, of course it is. That fact doesn't change that the character's behavior is completely incomprehensible, the story line is jumbled, and all in all this made for bad TV. I get so mad every time I think about this episode and get reminded that what this show focused on, when it did something about war torn places, was how sad the whole thing made the little blonde girl. Take it from someone who actually knows. There are horrifying things happening in parts of Africa and the Middle East, at this moment, and at the moment this episode was written. And framing it as if the tough part of the horrors, is how bad it feels for privileged people to watch it, is a complete disgrace to the strength, endurance and resilience of the people actually living it every day.
Another thing: Why the fuck would I lie about where I've been in the world? What would even be the point of that?

I will from this point on do what the rules of the internet tell me, and refrain from answering further. You're clearly stupid, but I'm not entirely sure whether you're the kind of stupid who knows it himself or doesn't. No matter. I realize I've wasted a certain amount of time writing all this, but it might not have been a complete waste, since it has made me reach the following conclusion: I win at life, and you can go fuck yourself.
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Yawn.
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It was silly to have a character wish for something to happen and make it happen just to get on with your story, BUT it had to be done somehow. I don't think it was a smart move, but I liked this episode enough to overlook it.
On TV, most characters seem larger than life and that's what makes it work. I don't blame Sorkin for making Will McAvoy a self-rightous a**hole.
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>>>> I don't blame Sorkin for making Will McAvoy a self-rightous a**hole.

All lead characters on all premium channels are self-righteous a-holes.

It's just the quality of writing and directing that keeps us watching or not.

Worth watching (NOT necessarily good shows): Dexter(just to see them all dead and the show end), Episodes, Californication, Big Love(LOVED the ending), Weeds(BS ending), Nurse Jackie(good show), Veep(excellent show), Magic City(good show, killed by STARZ too soon), Luck(wonderful show outside of the murdered horses, show killed by STARZ too soon), Homeland(excellent show), and Newsroom.

Not worth watching: Enlightened, very, very, very, very, very, very, very, very, very, very, very bad show.

I'm sure I left some out.

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Honestly the Maggie story just fell flat for me. I was expecting so much more from the build up and we get a cliché plot about a poor little African child dying...

Sure that crap will screw you up, but damn I was expecting something interesting, maybe her getting held hostage or something, not just something that feels at home in a hallmark movie of the week.
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Hah, ain't that the truth.

Maggie - panic attacks - takes Xanax - never woulda been allowed to go on the assignment in the first place.

Yawn to the storyline, M*A*S*H did it as it should have been done.
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I vaguely remember that... wasn't that the one where Hawkeye told a women to shut up her crying baby while they were hiding and she accidentally smothered it?

Yeah that will screw you up good and proper.
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Oh yeah, and the year was 1983, almost the birth of cable. 'Goodbye, Farewell and Amen'. If you haven't seen it, you should. Even as jaded as I am today, and who boy am I jaded, I cannot watch it again.

Blows most other finales away.

I did rewatch, though, and Sorkin did a PP job of explaining the finale, I read the comments on TWOP and listened to his 'episode comments for idiots at the end'. I guess you all understood that she and Dantana were at the same meeting with the general and only they (odd, don't you think) were and the general said 'it didn't happen' (the Sarin gas). Apparently Jerry (and I love me some Hamish Linklater) wanted his story to go forward so it became a he said/she said. So she (excuse me?) countered him and SHE got fired? And then he tried to blame it on her mental state? Wrongful termination? I think he would have been applying to a position as a eunuch if he did that to me.

Now, did YOU get that from the last episode? I surely didn't. Yes, her falling apart so badly from the death of one kid still didn't make sense, come on Maggie you live in NY, but unless I was a blockhead, I didn't get the he said/she said stuff at all. You?
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I didn't get that at all myself, I got there was some debate on who said what, but nothing of that sort.
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I kind of have to agree with you there. I mean, sure, a kid dying like that, it's hard and it will mess you up some, but... I was expecting rape, or several weeks of being kidnapped, watching a mass-murder happen... Things like that, you know?
Though I guess that statement is exactly what's wrong with this world. Events have to be devastatingly horrible before we take it seriously, as something that could affect us. So simply because of that, I'll take the explanation of Daniel and the book-reading and him liking her hair gladly.
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You dont sound pathetic and like a psychopath at all... I guess kids dying and screaming at a camera thinking its a gun doesnt shake you psychopath... You sound inane. Go back to your slaughterhouse :)
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Besides being 2 years late, please refrain from insulting other people on the internet. It's tacky and unnecessary. I'm quite capable of accepting another person's opinion without your slander of me.
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OMG..who are you people..really.. It´s seriously scary how many blood lust spoiled sociopaths are out there.. "Give me brutal gang rape, mass murders!! That would be fun.. Why should I care that some stupid kid died? It was such a cliche..boring!"
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I'm pretty certain the name of the network is ACN (Atlantis Cable News).

Mac: "It's a completely unbelievable story but I can't ignore evidence. It's not like I'm in Congress."
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A dude is credited with saying "fiction is life with the dull bits left out". I won't credit him here because I don't think he was the first or even tenth person to say it. In any case, that applies well to a single work of fiction. When referring to the collective body of works of fiction, I'd say "fiction is life with only the low probability stories left in". It wouldn't get quoted all over the place, but it is the case most of the time, except in the case of really bad fiction written by a beginning writer. If the show were about what's likely to happen in a given day, you wouldn't be seeing it because it wouldn't be on the air.
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The blatant confidence of the source falling into their lap was silly. It was similar to when shows blatantly point out their sponsors. But it was worse, because this wasn't a sponsor this was a plot that they apparently couldn't figure out how write it in organically. I expect this from crap shows, this is not supposed to be one of those shows.

There was a lot of easy convenience in this episode. From the way the press director for Romney broke down in front of Jim and him getting the story for Vasser girl, to Gary conveniently falling at the key time in order for Maggie to hesitate and getting Daniel shot.

Maggie is not fine. Maggie has never been fine she was already on anti anxiety mess in the first episode. Her drastic hair chopping indicates that she has both survivors guilt and feels that she is to blame for the death if the boy. Just as her relationship issues have prevented her from making wise decisions in the past this effects her even more so. And her not taking the meds, any lawyer would rip her to shreds.

Q's

No they aren't. A leaderless movement or revolution doesn't succeed, ever. Had the suffrage movement not had leaders women wouldn't have been able to vote until much later.

The OWS girl showing over and over why she wasn't and her movement wasn't taken seriously.

Nope.

Perry lost because that rock with that word on it is smarter than Rick Perry.

Dons line about the OWS girls need for psychological help.

Jim's was the least annoying.

Probably the press director

i would say our government's inability to get anything done. And it's effect on a lot of serious things such as nuclear proliferation whose,funding gt stuck in committee. Also ironically OWS, the girl exemplified one of their huge problems. "We just want to point at what's wrong". The problem with that is in a crisis situation you are either one of three things; you're part of the problem, the solution or the landscape. If all you are doing is sitting their pointing, you are the landscape. And people tend to ignore the landscape.
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>>>>>Maggie has never been fine she was already on anti anxiety mess in the first episode

Thank you for remembering. If her superiors were doing their jobs, they never would have sent here there to begin with.
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Another great episode in a string of great episodes to start the season. I don't have the same problem you do, Ryan, as far as them "wishing" the plot point to progress. To me, for any tv show, no matter how "realistic" it's supposed to be, you have to suspend disbelief a little bit. If it's a MAJOR thing, it's harder to do that, sure. But this wasn't that big. Convenient plot devices happen in every television show at some point.

Loved the little bits of comedy coming from the ACN team. Neal on the phone with "No. Sloan was smug" as she obnoxiously drank a milkshake was probably the highlight for me, but Charlie stuck to the window was a close second. I love this show's ability to weave dramatic tension and ridiculous comedy together so flawlessly. Sorkin does a better job with it here than even "Sports Night", which I feel is the apex of comedy in the Sorkin universe.
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No I get that fiction isn't hindered by the same rules as reality, in terms of event probability, or circumstantial likelihood, but that doesn't free the writers from at least trying to hide the fact that they can make anything happen to their characters. Especially in a show like the Newsroom, that dabbles in mixing fact with fiction, it's tonally uneven to have one character in the universe suffer realistic psychological damage because of a very raw experience (Maggie), and have another in that same universe governed by frothy sitcom logic.
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I can appreciate that argument. I think we just agree to disagree here. I totally understand your argument, but to me that just doesn't seem to me to be so large a sin.

Compare this to a show like Dexter, for example, where a group of people who are supposed to be police detectives categorically miss out on gigantic clues all the time and seem totally incompetent whenever the plot calls for it, and I feel as if a convenient plot point is on the trivial side. Especially considering the quality of everything else around it.

Good talk. One of the reasons I come here (other than the fact that I love television and enjoy discussing it with like minded individuals) is how interactive all of you at the site are, and getting a chance to converse one on one about your review.
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Staff
Fair enough, the Kraken of Argument shall remain unreleased.
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Well, now that you refer to it as "the Kraken of Argument" I'm kind of interested.

YOUR ARGUMENT IS STUPID RYAN! RELEASE THE KRAKEN!
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