Tuesday, July 31, 2012

What I’m Watching: The Newsroom

The Newsroom: Season 1, Episode 6 “Bullies” (B+)

I’m continually impressed by how this ensemble show structures itself around one main character and uses him as a focal point to tell the stories of all those around him. It’s also great to see the show speeding through time (the events of the pilot were now a year ago) and picking a certain point in time from which to reflect on events of the recent past. It was intriguing to see Will reluctantly divulge his thoughts to this therapist’s son, played by David Krumholtz from “Numb3rs,” and to learn that he bought a ring to pretend for Mackenzie like he had it all along and then threw out the receipt to save it for a future occasion. I love that Mackenzie launching opposition research into Will meant that Maggie and Jim dug up dirt on each other, and that it revealed something about her own personal life rather than anything productive. Sloan’s primetime debut was quite memorable, as she spoke Japanese on-air and then revealed what her source had told her off-the-record earlier, prompting an intense scolding from Charlie and a decent solution that saved her career but didn’t present her in the best light. Will’s death threat brought in an entertaining new character, Lonny, played by Terry Crews, who made his fair share of jokes before threatening to kill Will if he hadn’t been specifically assigned to protect him. Will managed to deliver his most unforgiving and harsh takedown of an interview subject yet, but he got it right back, and then some, from the insulted gay African-American. Don coming over not to yell at Sloan but to ask about the flirtation between Maggie and Jim was representative of just how good this show is at weaving together the personal and the professional. It’s hard to believe that we’re already halfway through the season.

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