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The Newsroom 1.4: I'll Try to Fix You

Unaware of Leona's opposition to News Night 2.0, Will and Mac take on lying liars who lie. To spectacular effect, IMO. Meanwhile, Don waves shiny roommates in front of Jim, Will gets wet, and Neal tries to convince his co-workers that Bigfoot is real. When Gabrielle Giffords is shot, the team gets it right.

Comments

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marymary
Jul. 17th, 2012 01:08 am (UTC)
Sorry this thread is up so late! I've been burning through Downton Abbey on DVD and I couldn't even stop to watch The Newsroom last night. Some of you understand. :)
gatsbyfan
Jul. 17th, 2012 02:48 am (UTC)
Yay! I totally understand.
marymary
Jul. 17th, 2012 01:12 am (UTC)
Well I liked this one very, very much. I think what Aaron got right this time is that the story bits were very strong -- they really held up the episode. The gun piece, the India piece, and the Gabrielle Giffords story. They were really well done and I think that's what this show needed badly at this point -- to show the team operating at this level. They reminded me of some of the "wins" on the West Wing.

And Aaron, that is SO MUCH BETTER, in terms of making your point and being right, than a long rant inside someone's office.
marymary
Jul. 17th, 2012 01:20 am (UTC)
Other things:

- Thomas Sadoski is gaining on JGJ, in the best actor race inside my head. When Don came into the newsroom on new year's eve -- the way he played distracted like that was really very good. And I liked his whole Jimmy Olson thing with Jim. I still want him to be less evil, cause I love what he's doing so much.

- Mac looks incredible in that black dress.

- IMDB says I know Hope Davis (Nina Howard) from "Six Degrees" but I think it's something else. Anyone?

- Maggie is wearing better clothes. Yay!

- Ado Annie and Annie Oakley. Ha!

- The whole last act, with the Giffords story, was fantastic. From Jim reading Maggie's face to getting "alive" right, to Will shouting his love for everyone. Just loved it.

- As much as I enjoyed the phone scene and the part where Jim says "Ask Don..." (indeed), I've put my finger on what I don't like about the relationship side of the show. There's, like, NO subtext. Everyone knows how everyone feels about everyone! Where's the look we need to interpret? Where's the simmer? I want the Sorkin simmer back! (Possibly I've been watching too much Downton.)
marymary
Jul. 17th, 2012 01:28 am (UTC)
I limit myself to three comments (well, three substantive comments) before anyone else arrives. Suddenly that strikes me as the hostess making herself a drink (three drinks) before she offers one to her guests. I will consider the matter between now and next week.

Favorite lines:

Don: "It's a compliment. Jimmy Olson was a go-getter."
Jim: "Yeah, but strictly speaking, he was a photojournalist. In fact, when DC Comics first introduced the character..."
Don: (slaps him on the face)

Charlie: "How much was the tux?"
Ok, this I have to explain. This is very reminiscent of a line from Broadcast News. There's also some bits where we see Don's dry cleaning and other things that make me think maybe Aaron's a fan (as am I).

Will: "I didn't take a position on guns; I took a position on lying. I'm against it."

Control Room Guy: "Joe. Just breathe regular."
HA! Add that to the Sorkin Supercuts.
tomfoolery815
Jul. 18th, 2012 01:07 am (UTC)
I limit myself to three comments (well, three substantive comments) before anyone else arrives.
I do that, too! (You may have taught me that, actually.) Feels like the polite way to do things. Although sometimes exuberance gets the better of me. :)
edgeriffic
Jul. 17th, 2012 01:56 am (UTC)
Hello, hello. Second to arrive, I'm so psyched. Though apparently I'm already three drinks behind so let me get on that....

I've been burning through Downton Abbey on DVD and I couldn't even stop to watch The Newsroom last night. Some of you understand. :)

Yay, Downton Abbey! I need to go back and re-watch it sometime before it comes back to the U.S.A. Best thing ever, besides it, is the SNL spoof with it being on SpikeTV....

I think what Aaron got right this time is that the story bits were very strong -- they really held up the episode....I think that's what this show needed badly at this point -- to show the team operating at this level. They reminded me of some of the "wins" on the West Wing.

Yes, I agree. I too really enjoyed the episode and I think this is why. For whatever reason, showing people doing politics well, and showing people doing the news well seems to work for him, but showing people doing comedy well did not. Thus the demise of Studio 60.

I still want him to be less evil, cause I love what he's doing so much.

It's the one step forward, two steps back thing, and I'm kind of digging it, to my surprise. I find him appealing in certain moments in spite of not wanting to. Part of me wants him all black or all white, while recognizing that the gray is so much more interesting. I liked him making the call on not declaring her dead, and yet not fully knowing the good he had done? Or perhaps he resists everyone else's good guy/bad guy way of looking at things. In any case, I'm interested to see where his character goes, after these last two episodes, and that's a good thing. Not so much interested in the love triangle, though; more on that later.


IMDB says I know Hope Davis (Nina Howard) from "Six Degrees" but I think it's something else. Anyone?

I saw her first as Gwyneth Paltrow's sister in that movie where Anthony Hopkins is their brilliant but crazy mathematician father and Gwyneth is also brilliant and a little nuts. Great movie--best eulogy scene ever. I forget the name. Hope Davis was also in season 2 I think of the therapy show on HBO with Gabriel Byrne. (Jeez, having trouble with titles much? Early senility is so sad....).


(ETA: The AH/GP/HD movie title is Proof, the GB therapy show title is In Treatment. Love my IMBD phone ap....)







Edited at 2012-07-17 03:05 am (UTC)
edgeriffic
Jul. 17th, 2012 02:27 am (UTC)
Don: "It's a compliment. Jimmy Olson was a go-getter."
Jim: "Yeah, but strictly speaking, he was a photojournalist. In fact, when DC Comics first introduced the character..."
Don: (slaps him on the face)


Ha! I totally missed this, due to some weird digital hiccup on my recording. Now watching it again becomes mandatory, not optional, yay! Jim does have a Jimmy Olson quality about him, could definitely see him in a bow tie.... Also, Jim Halpert-ness, as Tom pointed out correctly last week. So all in all, Jim's a good choice of character name. Oh, and I didn't like his hair this week--seemed goofier than usual.

This is very reminiscent of a line from Broadcast News. There's also some bits where we see Don's dry cleaning and other things that make me think maybe Aaron's a fan (as am I).

I know I read something about Broadcast News as an influence in an article or review of the show--I feel like it was something Aaron said but I could be mis-remembering. The intimacy of the Mac/Will talking through the headphones reminds me a lot of the William Hurt to Holly Hunter "It's like GREAT SEX" line in BN, especially when Mac's voice gets all low and gentle. Also the rushing around with little bits of paper full of crucial info. And there's just a similar feel to it in a lot of spots. (I'm also a big BN fan, we went to see it with friends the day after we got home from our honeymoon, in one of my favorite movie theaters in Manhattan).

tomfoolery815
Jul. 18th, 2012 12:54 am (UTC)
Also, Jim Halpert-ness, as Tom pointed out correctly last week.
I was agreeing with Mary. She pointed out the Halpert-ness of Harper. :)
edgeriffic
Jul. 18th, 2012 01:05 am (UTC)
So by the transitive property of television commentary and early onset senility, I was agreeing with Mary. Coolness. :-)
tomfoolery815
Jul. 18th, 2012 01:10 am (UTC)
Speaking of Sorkin as we are: I was reading your reply to me, and my screen suddenly went black. I wondered what had happened to my computer. Then "Twenty-Five" resumed where I had left it on iTunes. :)
edgeriffic
Jul. 17th, 2012 02:56 am (UTC)
Should I follow the three comment limit as well? And, should I leave some original thoughts, not just thoughts in response to Mary, lovely and brilliant as she is? Okey dokey!

Loved:

Will: "You're still on in 30". His delivery of that made me laugh out loud.

Title music: It sticks in my head for a few days and not in a bad way. I find it very lovely, and moving. (It reminds me a little of Broadcast News too, though if one takes that connection too far you end up at the classic scene with the two composers pitching the new evening news theme: "La dee da, la de da da da....Big Finish!".) I never loved the WW theme, I'm sad to say, so I'm glad to love this one.

Liked:

Drinks in the face---this held up pretty well, I thought, made me laugh each time. The one in the meeting was funny as was Mac's recap of the sharing of the blame, and the third one was especially funny since she started out the date bringing up the article about the first drink in the face. Plus Will's reaction.

Meh:

Bigfoot bit. I love love love Dev Patel, and I'm happy whenever he is on my screen, but I want the quiet gems not the in your face earnestness/nerdiness. I though it got a little labored. The various "no" responses were kind of funny but repetitive, and the PowerPoint just seemed to be taking it too far--too big a stretch that they would all come in on a Saturday just for that. Seemed a dramatic contrivance to get them all be there on a Saturday just in time for the Gabby Gifford shooting.

Nitpick:

Why would they have a New Year's Eve Party at work, and all be there? Seems so unlikely to me. I know that the news goes on, holiday or no, but usually there's a second string anchor (maybe there was since Will says twice that he was at a different party first) and wouldn't a lot of people request the night off, or at the very least have other places to be once the show is over? Just seemed contrived to me.

***

Finally (for now!) can I just say how happy I am that there is so much to talk about, large and small? I'm loving the richness of this show. It makes me happy. I have more to say---I really want to weigh in on the portrayal of women, and the portrayal of the romances (spoiler: I think Mary hit the nail on the head)-- but I will wait for others to come in first! Cheers!









Edited at 2012-07-17 03:00 am (UTC)
elinorigbe
Jul. 17th, 2012 05:11 am (UTC)
I feel the same way about the music. It's romantic and emotional and evocative of the eras that are flashing across the screen. In the same way that that BOAC ad from last season was. Soaring emotional music behind scenes from the early days of flight. Pilots in leather helmets and goggles, flying by the seat of their pants, and then later 4 engine stratocruisers with women in fur collars and cloche hats boarding for flights to far away places with strange sounding names.
elinorigbe
Jul. 17th, 2012 04:57 am (UTC)
Frak, I just wrote for ever, and LJ ate my missive. Why don't I learn to save my words before hitting post?

I have 3 pages of notes, many of them about how it reminds me of Sorkin 101. I didn't love the Big Foot bit except that it reminded me of Leo's Big Block of Cheese Day, and that made me smile. And it was sweet of Will to tell Neal to let him take a look at the story later. It was funny when Neal jumped right in with his earnest explanation, and Will had to put him off. It reminded me of Josh trying to hug Leo...

Other quotes, more fodder for the Sorkin Supercuts:

The Red Dress, borrowed, looking good on Maggie.

"I've got great instincts about this."

"My eyes are connected to my brain."

"Hurricanes are caused by high barometric pressure, not gay marriage."

How's it going so far?"

The "What a Shame File."

Ado Annie/Annie Oakley (And we lost Celeste Holmes on Sunday.)

Other quotes, new and memorable:

"Human cockfighting makes us mean and insensitive."

"On the off chance that you're not going to live forever, why not take a shot at being happy now?"

"Michelle Bachmann, who has a difficult relationship with reality..."

"Wait, wait...the $4000.00 tux, you didn't buy it off the rack did you? This isn't News Corp, it's us, it's AWM..." Charlie sounding like Josh when he realized that the quote came not from Donna but from what's his face with the 13 (12?) buttons in his dress trousers.

Kathryn Hahn!!! she of Boeing Boeing--a three cornered connection.

I liked Maggie's dialog better this week, she's fitting into her character better. The exchange on the bed after she phoned Jim, and Don backstopped her with her roomie's ring tone was contrived, but her lines and facial expressions were spot on becoming self aware.

And I loved her smug little grin with Jim toward the end.

I admit to looking for J/D type tension in this show. It made TWW sizzle around the edges of the main plots, gave a lot of texture to the show.

Mac and Will seem to be warming to each other, becoming kinder.




Edited at 2012-07-17 05:16 am (UTC)
edgeriffic
Jul. 17th, 2012 01:20 pm (UTC)
Kathryn Hahn!!! she of Boeing Boeing--a three cornered connection.

Yes! I forgot to mention that. Lovely to see her again.

Also, the actress who plays Maggie's roommate Lisa played Pam's sister (friend? cousin?) on the wedding episode of The Office, she's the one who Dwight kicked in the face (funnier than it sounds...)
elinorigbe
Jul. 17th, 2012 04:29 pm (UTC)
For whatever reason, showing people doing politics well, and showing people doing the news well seems to work for him, but showing people doing comedy well did not.

I think it's because of the relative "seriousness" of politics and news compared with comedy. That sounds like a Duh thing, but I mean that he can use stronger images and words and situations about the former subjects, but when he tries to do that with comedy, it just looks and sounds ridiculous.
edgeriffic
Jul. 18th, 2012 12:51 am (UTC)
I agree---and it's not a "duh" thing. Comedy is harder than drama, I think. It's a shame that great comedic performances so often get overlooked at Oscar time.
tomfoolery815
Jul. 18th, 2012 01:04 am (UTC)
Kathryn Hahn!!!
Her character wasn't that far from the character she played on Parks and Rec this past season. Further Sorkin connection: On there, her character hooked up with Rob Lowe's. She's great.

I really enjoyed this episode. It appears you guys did, too.

I like that Sorkin gave Don a chance to be more than just Roy from the warehouse. Of course Don is much smarter than Roy, but it's more interesting to have him be more than the one coming between the OTP. Because nothing unites the team quite like hostility toward the suits. :)

As much as I enjoyed the phone scene and the part where Jim says "Ask Don..." (indeed)
That being said, it was good to have Jim pull back the curtain to reveal Don trying to be the great and powerful Oz, and for Jim to show Maggie that.

Carrying out my Jim-Pam-Roy comparison, it's more interesting for Don to be aware of the Jim-Maggie chemistry, and Jim's obvious interest in Maggie. Mary, I think that might have to suffice for subtext: Our knowledge, or our perception, of the thought process of the three sides of the triangle.
marymary
Jul. 21st, 2012 09:38 pm (UTC)
Bigfoot bit. I love love love Dev Patel, and I'm happy whenever he is on my screen, but I want the quiet gems not the in your face earnestness/nerdiness. I though it got a little labored. The various "no" responses were kind of funny but repetitive, and the PowerPoint just seemed to be taking it too far--too big a stretch that they would all come in on a Saturday just for that. Seemed a dramatic contrivance to get them all be there on a Saturday just in time for the Gabby Gifford shooting.

I agree with every word, edgy. I remember thinking that I would have liked it if Neal had just done that first Bigfoot bit, at the party. It would have been a delightful character point, not something we'd pick apart.

Title music: It sticks in my head for a few days and not in a bad way.

I feel the same way about the music. It's romantic and emotional and evocative of the eras that are flashing across the screen.


I'm so glad you guys like the music! Don't know if you caught my comment in the pilot thread, but it's by my favorite movie composer, Thomas Newman. He did such great scores as Little Women and Meet Joe Black (the music was better than the movie).

"Hurricanes are caused by high barometric pressure, not gay marriage."

elinor I loved that too. Entertainment Weekly put it in their TV quotes of the week.

I like that Sorkin gave Don a chance to be more than just Roy from the warehouse.

Yes, Tom, I agree. More of this, please.



Edited at 2012-07-21 09:42 pm (UTC)
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