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The Newsroom....whaddya think?

Wynbish Profile Photo
Wynbish
Broadway Legend
joined:4/27/12
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 7/30/12 at 01:21pm
I like Maggie as a character. I think she and Jim are cute (Jim's my favorite character).

However, she is just not as great a representation of an intelligent woman in the news world as Sloan.

She, to me, is better than Mack because Maggie is an intern who very quickly jumped up to Associate Producer. Mack has much more experience and should be the one who's better.
Updated On: 7/30/12 at 01:21 PM
wonkit
Broadway Legend
joined:9/30/08
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 7/30/12 at 01:33pm
I, too, like Sloan, since she is the strongest woman on this series so far. Stupid question - is Munn fluent in Japanese or is it the best fake I've ever heard?

The title of this episode was "Bullies." The entire point was that Will realized that he was engaging in the very bullying tactics that he felt were wrong when used by others. It is not the role of a newsman to harangue people but to find the truth. Otherwise there would not have been any difference between Joe McCarthy and Edward R. Murrow.
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Phyllis Rogers Stone
Broadway Legend
joined:9/16/07
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 7/30/12 at 01:34pm
Did anyone else think that the Japanese reactor subplot was maybe not necessary?

It was of course necessary because every week not only do we have to see how the world of the Newsroom would have handled the news better than the real world news (except for MSNBC and Comedy Central) and because the Newsroom always magically has some kind of "in" with whatever the news story du jour is. The story was needed because the Newsroom has to be righter than everyone else and they were, because Sloane knew that the reactor was going to go to 7 when no one else did.

I thought the out and proud gay African-American republican pro life Rick Santorum champion was a magical creation.

Updated On: 7/30/12 at 01:34 PM
ChanceEncounter
Stand-by
joined:7/7/12
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 7/30/12 at 01:52pm
I just don't understand all the hate for this show. I mean, if it was trying to hide it's self-righteousness and self-importance that would be one thing. But it isn't It's proud that it thinks it's smarter than you. Unlike Girls which tried to mask it's self-importance.

Seriously Kringas, if you just let yourself get past your problems with the revisionist history it can be very enjoyable. Well, I mean, if you enjoy Sorkin. I mean everyone's favorite Sorkin Characters are all that. He just took everyone from the west wing and gave them a new name and job. Maggie is Donna, Jim is Josh, Mack is CJ, Sam Waterson is Leo, Sloan is Mary Louise Parker.

I have a blast every episode.
Wynbish Profile Photo
Wynbish
Broadway Legend
joined:4/27/12
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 7/30/12 at 01:55pm
It really has not had a bad episode.
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Addison D.
Broadway Legend
joined:5/17/12
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 7/30/12 at 02:14pm
Chance--I scrolled back through this thread to find a comment from Kringas and can't find one. Since my comment alludes to revisionist history, I'm wondering if you were responding to my post?

If so, I'll just say I don't hate the show at all. I thought the perspective might be interesting to people who were watching/thinking about 'The Newsroom' so I tossed it into the thread, but I'm a Sorkin lover from way back. Rather--I'm a lover of Sorkin's WORK from way back.

If you weren't addressing me, well, then--nevermind....
You think, what do you want? You think, make a decision...
Phyllis Rogers Stone Profile Photo
Phyllis Rogers Stone
Broadway Legend
joined:9/16/07
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 7/30/12 at 02:22pm
But it's not smarter than me.

I never watched the West Wing. I watched Studio 60, which I liked in spite of myself. And Sports Night, but that was a hundred years ago and Sorkin has just gotten more Sorkiny.

I just don't understand the point of devoting so much time in the episodes to news events that happened a year ago, except to tell us why the Newsroom could have done them better. Except, as I've pointed out, MSNBC and Comedy Central already did it better.


Updated On: 7/30/12 at 02:22 PM
ChanceEncounter
Stand-by
joined:7/7/12
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 7/30/12 at 04:12pm
No, addison that comment wasn't directed at you


I didn't say it was smarter than you hun, I said it thinks it is.

also, re; MSNBC, Will is clearly built in some part on Keith Olbermann and his Countdown show.
Wynbish Profile Photo
Wynbish
Broadway Legend
joined:4/27/12
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 7/30/12 at 04:20pm
What if the concept about presenting old news is that they don't have waste time having to tell us everything that is going on with the news?

Presenting and keeping up with new news stories with new public and political figures on top of the drama behind the scenes would be a lot for fifty-five minutes.
Phyllis Rogers Stone Profile Photo
Phyllis Rogers Stone
Broadway Legend
joined:9/16/07
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 7/30/12 at 04:42pm
What if the concept about presenting old news is that they don't have waste time having to tell us everything that is going on with the news?

But the amount of time they take to devote to said old news kind of proves that wrong, doesn't it? They devote a good quarter of the episode to the news at the time. They'd be better served to just have news they script for the show. It's not like they are taking one story and making the season revolve around it. They've jumped how many months (six? a year?) since the show started with no shred of character development. The further the show moves in time the more horrible and ridiculous Mackenzie and Will seem, with regard to their history, since not only had so much time passed when the show started, but even more time has passed SINCE the show started. Don and Maggie keep breaking up over stupid things. These aren't even characters. They are mouthpieces, and they are kind of terrible mouthpieces at that.

also, re; MSNBC, Will is clearly built in some part on Keith Olbermann and his Countdown show

I was just thinking that earlier, that Will is Keith Olbermann claiming to be a Republican.



Updated On: 7/30/12 at 04:42 PM
Wynbish Profile Photo
Wynbish
Broadway Legend
joined:4/27/12
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 7/30/12 at 10:27pm
wonkit - From stuff I read today, Olivia did some modeling in Japan and then minored in Japanese.
wonkit
Broadway Legend
joined:9/30/08
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 7/30/12 at 10:32pm
Thanks! Everything about the way she spoke Japanese seemed genuine.
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romantico
Broadway Legend
joined:3/6/05
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 7/30/12 at 10:32pm
Sorkin denied the Olberman/MSNBC connection. Frankly, I don't see any similarities.

http://www.hollywood.com/news/Aaron_Sorkin_I_Didnt_Base_The_Newsroom_on_Keith_Olbermann/31905226
'There are three sides to every story. My side, your side, and the truth. And no one is lying. Memories shared serve each one differently' -Robert Evans-
Phyllis Rogers Stone Profile Photo
Phyllis Rogers Stone
Broadway Legend
joined:9/16/07
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 7/30/12 at 11:05pm
LOL


(Lots of Love!)
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Taryn
Broadway Legend
joined:1/24/04
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 7/31/12 at 10:51am
Wynbish, I absolutely agree with you re: representations of women. Mackenzie is so incredibly frustrating a figure to watch. The idea that a basic understanding of the economy was sacrificed in this professional NEWS PRODUCER so that Sorkin could jabber about the economy was pretty annoying.

I do really like Maggie as a character, and she has a lot more excuse for her professional flightiness, because it reads so much more as a product of her youth and energy. Sorkin just makes Mackenzie really dumb about a lot of things.
Phyllis Rogers Stone Profile Photo
Phyllis Rogers Stone
Broadway Legend
joined:9/16/07
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 7/31/12 at 03:09pm
No, Maggie is dumb, too. See LOL
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Taryn
Broadway Legend
joined:1/24/04
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 7/31/12 at 04:28pm
*sigh* Yeah, that was kind of excruciating. Women sucking at technology is an old, obnoxious, sexist trope, and Sorkin's made Mackenzie and Maggie the two comedically terrible failures at modern computers and internet. (Of course, the person who is the internet expert is the...male Indian. GOOD JOB, SORKIN.)

It's just easier for me to take Maggie's dumb moments versus Mackenzie's because she's younger and less experienced.
Phyllis Rogers Stone Profile Photo
Phyllis Rogers Stone
Broadway Legend
joined:9/16/07
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 7/31/12 at 04:32pm
And they're all aging at a rapid clip on this show and she is STILL an idiot!
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Taryn
Broadway Legend
joined:1/24/04
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 8/2/12 at 12:33pm
http://tvline.com/2012/08/01/aaron-sorkin-the-newsroom-criticism/

He talks about the criticism of his female characters (yeah, I'm gonna disagree with your disagreement, Sorkin) and the rumors of him firing his writing staff, which he claims isn't true.
Wynbish Profile Photo
Wynbish
Broadway Legend
joined:4/27/12
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 8/5/12 at 10:16pm
Finally, a John & Jeff duet!

Disclaimer for people who are nutty like me: It was annoying how, very early, Christian Bale was called English and not Welsh, where he was born. So, I paused and researched. Christian has called himself English, since he grew up in England.
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Jordan Catalano
Broadway Legend
joined:10/9/05
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 8/5/12 at 10:58pm
Damn you Aaron Sorkin for making me cry again!
Wynbish Profile Photo
Wynbish
Broadway Legend
joined:4/27/12
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 8/5/12 at 11:01pm
Crap! I've been replaying stuff, so I am twenty minutes behind. It's a tear-jerker again?

ETA: Yep, there it is. The pilot.

ETA again: And the fact that they played the audio of Obama's speech during the credits. I mean, come on. Sorkin's a heartstrings-tugging genius.
Updated On: 8/5/12 at 11:01 PM
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E.Davis
Broadway Legend
joined:1/1/08
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 8/6/12 at 12:11pm
The Pilot interaction made me well up also. At least once an episode something gets me.
"I think lying to children is really important, it sets them off on the right track" -Sherie Rene Scott-
Wynbish Profile Photo
Wynbish
Broadway Legend
joined:4/27/12
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 8/6/12 at 12:18pm
Especially since they had not said that they were on a United flight until the pilot was shown.

I also liked the slight dig at Fox News and how Tess (I think that's her name) gave Will the "Obama good, Osama bad" signs.
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dramamama611
Broadway Legend
joined:12/4/07
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 8/6/12 at 01:17pm
I really like this episode, too. I also like how they told the body guard and cops.

I know there is likely not an ounce of reality going on: but I love it. I care about the characters, I like the stories. I will be sad when the season is over.
If we're not having fun, then why are we doing it? These are DISCUSSION boards, not mutual admiration boards. Discussion only occurs when we are willing to hear what others are thinking, regardless of whether it is alignment to our own thoughts.
Phyllis Rogers Stone Profile Photo
Phyllis Rogers Stone
Broadway Legend
joined:9/16/07
The Newsroom....whaddya think?
Posted: 8/17/12 at 09:16pm
From: Brian.Brenner@gmail.com
To: Editor@NYMag.com
Subject: McAvoy story update

Sent: May 28, 2011 22:00

Hey, man —

I’ve been here for two days, and you should see what a sack of self-reverential nutjobs work at this place. At a pitch meeting, they actually compared the war on drugs to their own crusade against fluff news. Failures all around.

Anyway, this is going to be a great story if I can get anybody on the record. McAvoy is forcing me to shadow him for a bit before he decides whether we get the story. Until then, everything is off the record. But he’s blatantly admitted his agenda in having us come in (which sort of defeats the purpose of having an agenda, if you ask me). He wants somebody to expose Leona Lansing’s crusade against him, and he wants me to be the guy who does it because — well, I can’t tell you. Even though it’s journalistic malpractice to report on somebody … well, somebody I used to know … Will says I should go ahead and do it anyway. He says a partial disclosure of my, uh, friendship with his EP in the second graf should be fine. You okay with that?

He told me this while smoking cigarettes in his office, which is plainly illegal. Staffers tell me he’s much more fun when he’s illegally smoking pot. I asked him about it, and he muttered something about Don Quixote playing softball.

Originally, I pitched you a story about how McAvoy was becoming the last bastion of news and truth on cable news. But now the story seems to be that McAvoy is reverting. Half of his audience stopped watching when he didn’t cover the Casey Anthony trial, which seems hard to believe since they’ve all grown accustomed to News Night’s hard-news agenda. But apparently logic is defied a lot around here.

McAvoy’s running scared, is what I’m saying, which he admitted to me (again, off the record). Lansing is trying to run him out of ACN, and the ratings drop is all the cover she needs. Did I mention that already? Sorry. Was worried you might have forgotten. Aaron Sorkin once told me that it’s best to repeat story lines several times. “Never trust your audience when you can demean them,” was his quote, I think. Come to think of it, he told me that a few times the night I met him.

So, McAvoy’s caving. (He said it was because he had to or he couldn’t moderate — and, of course, thus revolutionize — presidential debates. (Shame, I was hoping Terry Smith would get to be the moderator. Love his Capitol Report show.) But McAvoy’s EP, MacKenzie (the one who’s going to star in our totally full disclosure), has apparently brainwashed the staff. They’ve been so busy making hard news, they’ve forgotten how to make compelling news. A former staffer who is somehow even more condescending than McAvoy came in to give them a crash course in how Nancy Grace does it.

The guy — he was sort of separate from the main group, so I didn’t catch his name; Juan, maybe? — is one of those sneering sexists who doesn’t quite realize it. He singled out the women for being stooges in Nancy Grace’s plan to corrupt American minds. “No one's ever gone broke in America serving up a woman who makes other women feel superior.” And what was weirder — the women totally bought it!

The sexism angle has to make it into my piece somehow. It’s like all the women here are reinforcing their own negative portrayals. I’ve never seen anything like it. At one point, McAvoy’s blogger, Neal, was talking to ACN's star economic correspondent, Sloan Sabbith. When Neal, pretending to be an Internet troll, told her she “screwed her way to the top and has a big ass,” Sloan overreacted despite Neal making it clear that he was tossing out a hypothetical. She assaulted Neal and demanded, “Do I?” She was talking about her butt. The far more offensive, damning allegation went totally unmentioned. It’s like they’re starring in a workplace drama from the sixties.

Anyway, the crash course worked — the Casey Anthony coverage brought 150,000 people back. Wouldn’t Will’s regular viewers turn off the TV at the first sight of Baby Caylee, you ask? Me too. Nobody around here seems to have even thought of the question.

What else, what else? Oh! I followed ACN's news president to the New York Public Library. (Sneaky, I know.) He was awesomely reverential as he walked through its halls, and a triumphant string section started playing somewhere in the building at just the right time. It was a very triumphant walk. He met with a source, but I couldn’t catch what they were saying. I do know that he asked a staffer to vet him — even though all the source asked was that News Night highlight the source’s old congressional testimony. But the news executive is treating it like they have an exclusive or something. Weird news judgment in this place.

Office gossip seems atypically light, at least while I was there. Sources tell me there’s a lot of tension between an associate producer, senior producer, and that Juan guy, but I didn’t catch much. There was that time when the senior producer felt emasculated because the associate was calling him "she," but I just chalked that up to the antiquated gender norms in the air.

Still working on the Will-MacKenzie love story angle. It seems to only move forward when there’s a third party involved. Maybe my being here will help it along.

Oh, one more thing: The power went out right as the News Night team was further sullying their immaculate values and doing a hit on Anthony Weiner. Came right as MacKenzie was praying to God, too. Very convenient (that kind of thing tends to happen a lot around here). I did some Googling, and it doesn’t look like anywhere else in New York had a power outage. Would be totally bizarre if only ACN's office went down. Almost as bizarre as how it was 98 degrees in the block around ACN, but 82 degrees everywhere else. That must be why the power went out.

Emptying my notebook:
Right before the blackout happened, I spotted a former colleague of mine from an old mag called Parks and Recreation. Was funny to see her here, especially because I hear another old colleague is dating News Night’s blogger.
Caught a glimpse of Leona Lansing leaving the building. She was regal and elegant, and seemed like the only person at ACN who wasn’t an emotional mess. Seems to me like she’s deserving of her own story. Maybe a follow-up after we’re done with this piece?
You wouldn’t believe how many times people yell at each other in full sight here. (Sloan and MacKenzie were arguing about the debt ceiling.) It’s like nobody has an office. My sources tell me there have been at least a half-dozen of these eruptions in the bullpen in the last year. Makes it very hard to work, they say.
Everybody drops a lot of names and references around here. The ones I caught: Camelot, Don Quixote, Jerry Springer, David Frum, Mark McKinnon, Alan Simpson, Steve Schmidt, Andrew Sullivan, J. Edgar Hoover, Broadway Danny Rose, Sarah Lawrence college, Dan Rather getting pushed out of CBS, and Taylor Swift. (Couldn’t really catch what was said at the NYPL, so I probably missed some, the way these people talk.)

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