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The Newsroom 1.6: Bullies

Will receives a death threat and a tabloid threat, which result in a security detail and new assignment for Jim and Maggie, respectively. Sloan pursues the latest on the Fukijima nuclear reactor and goes too far, on air. Will's insomnia drives him to his psychiatrist, who uncovers the origin of some of his behavior.

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marymary
Jul. 30th, 2012 05:39 am (UTC)
Favorite lines...

Mac: I have to give you a rotten assignment.
Jim: You got gum in your hair again?
Mac: No! ...Yes, but I got it out.

Don: So what do you say? You are my first and only choice.
Sloan: What about Jerome?
Don: He's in Bermuda
Sloan: Kathy.
Don: It's her parents' 50th anniversary.
Sloan: Taylor?
Don: Bronchitis.
Sloan: So...
Don: Yes, you are my fourth and only choice.

Will: How long?
Lonnie: Until my colleagues chase down the source of the threat or you've been successfully assasinated.

Maggie: Jim, who got kicked out of a study abroad semester. He went to the artic circle.
Jim: I wanted to see the penguins.
Mac: Penguins are in the antarctic.
Jim: Lesson learned.
Mac: Why'd you get kicked out?
Jim: You're not allowed to fraternize with the Inuit.
Maggie: He tried to score with an Eskimo.
Jim: I was just trying to get past the disappointment of the penguins.

Sloan: We'll be back after this with Sarah Bernhardt.
marymary
Jul. 30th, 2012 05:52 am (UTC)
I think my favorite moment was when Don put his finger under Sloan's chin and brought it up a bit. It was sweet, but it was also great in the context of all the conflict they had over the whole thing.

I really liked the whole Sloan storyline. I thought that was really well done and suspenseful. The on-air time was absolutely riveting. I loved Don after he understood she was outing the off-record comment, saying, "Go back to Japanese."

Two things I had a problem with:

- I found the argument between Will and Santorum's spokesman pretty unrealistic. Just in terms of how heated it got, on both sides. I get that it was supposed to show Will going over the line, but I thought it was unrealistic on the other side too.

- My biggest problem: Mac believes Will not only bought her an engagement ring in 2006 and has kept it to this day, but she believes that he KEEPS IT IN HIS DESK DRAWER AT WORK. (And, though I do believe Will would do something as wacky as buying the ring to make some kind of point, I do not believe that, simply knowing about the opposition research, he could have anticipated a conversation where Mac would accuse him of not having wanted to marry her, setting up the ring thing.)
aunt_deen
Jul. 30th, 2012 02:34 pm (UTC)
Hi. :)

I thought the same thing about the ring. Even if he wanted to have it in the drawer, it should have been buried at the back under a whole pile of stuff. And if he's crafty enough to anticipate exactly how she'd react to the late night offer, he's certainly smart enough to think that it shouldn't be right where he'd have to supposedly look at it and reach past it every day for the last four years.

(no subject) - marymary - Jul. 30th, 2012 03:05 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - tomfoolery815 - Jul. 30th, 2012 05:09 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - gatsbyfan - Jul. 30th, 2012 11:14 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - marymary - Jul. 31st, 2012 03:31 am (UTC) - Expand
marymary
Jul. 30th, 2012 03:11 pm (UTC)
Even if he wanted to have it in the drawer, it should have been buried at the back under a whole pile of stuff.

Yes, it would have been smart of him to let her see him root around for it.

Having it in the front of the drawer, and having the Tiffany's bag right next to it, was for our benefit. We saw the bag and went, "Waaait, a minute." So yeah, I thought it was badly done.
aunt_deen
Jul. 30th, 2012 03:18 pm (UTC)
The blue Tiffany bag should have been on top, visible to the viewer, and then he rummaged in the back for the actual ring.
tomfoolery815
Jul. 30th, 2012 05:08 pm (UTC)
Maggie: He tried to score with an Eskimo.
That was my favorite line, Mary. Alison Pill's gleeful delivery was just perfect.

I also enjoyed Jim's response about disappointment ... and the fact that they were using the opposition-research assignment as an excuse to dig up stuff on each other.

Will: How long?
Lonnie: Until my colleagues chase down the source of the threat or you've been successfully assasinated.

Terry Crews, who plays Lonnie, was "Terry Tate: Office Linebacker" in those commercials for ... some company a few years ago. He seems to be like Nathan Fillion a bit, in that he's a big guy who's also funny. (One of you, I think it was Mary, quoted Joss as saying that NF was that rare combination.) Crews does look like he could sack the quarterback, then make him laugh about it.
tomfoolery815
Jul. 30th, 2012 05:17 pm (UTC)
You two are right about the staging of the ring bit. I like that they showed Will ripping up the receipt -- his lies about his feelings for Mackenzie are in concentric circles, aren't they? -- but it could have been executed better.

Meanwhile, I think the problem with being a Sorkin junkie is that, in knowing he likes to recycle, you can actually see things coming. Which is contrary to one of the best things about a Sorkin story: It moves fast because it presumes you (the viewer) want to be treated as a smart person.

But when you've already seen Dan Rydell, Josh Lyman and Jed Bartlet in therapy, you know the chord change in the bridge without anyone calling it out to you. They took so long for Will to answer the therapist's question about standing up to his father, I was able to formulate my guess, say it aloud (to myself) ... and only be off by one year. (My guess was age 10.)

Edited at 2012-07-30 05:39 pm (UTC)
anatolealice
Aug. 11th, 2012 01:14 pm (UTC)
I was still suprised by how blindsided I was by the al anon comment. When the shrink brought up the drunk, abusive father I thought, oh, of course, how did this not occur to me. But then later, the almost aside about al anon? Big, gulping, I can't breathe sobs over it. Sigh. Wasn't expecting either.
tomfoolery815
Jul. 30th, 2012 05:27 pm (UTC)
- I found the argument between Will and Santorum's spokesman pretty unrealistic. Just in terms of how heated it got, on both sides. I get that it was supposed to show Will going over the line, but I thought it was unrealistic on the other side too.
I agree, Mary. The TV newspeople who engage in bullying either know and don't care that they're bullies, or just never let that on-air facade fall. Also, people who are being bullied on air don't fire back that way. They're either too flustered, or cut off before they have a chance to respond.

I get that this is an idealized version of a team producing a news program. I enjoy that it's idealized, actually, because it appeals to my own idealism about life in general and journalism in particular. But I learned, with this episode, that I need what happens during ACN's programs to be more realistic than that. Will's interview with the Santorum guy was as much a therapy session as the actual therapy session.

Conversely, I liked Sloan's whole storyline. She admires Will, he kicked her ass in his office, and that pushed her to go over the line on the air.

"Go back to Japanese."
Hee! Don had quite a roller-coaster ride there. Nice work, again, by Sadoski.
marymary
Jul. 30th, 2012 07:17 pm (UTC)
... and the fact that they were using the opposition-research assignment as an excuse to dig up stuff on each other

Yes! Excellent point -- that was funny.

But when you've already seen Dan Rydell, Josh Lyman and Jed Bartlet in therapy, you know the chord change in the bridge without anyone calling it out to you.

SO TRUE. Even the cadence of the whole thing and the bantery style of the session is straight out of the Josh/Jed/Dan therapy.

But I learned, with this episode, that I need what happens during ACN's programs to be more realistic than that.

Conversely, I liked Sloan's whole storyline.


Yes, exactly -- the on-air stuff has to feel realistic or all the rest of it falls apart, IMO. Hers worked; his didn't. Sloan going off-script and talking to them in Japanese felt not too far from what, say, an Anderson Cooper might do if he got a little ticked off.

"Go back to Japanese."
Hee! Don had quite a roller-coaster ride there. Nice work, again, by Sadoski.


Yep, all that was a really nice piece for him and he killed it. I continue to like TS more and more.
gatsbyfan
Jul. 30th, 2012 11:26 pm (UTC)
I continue to like TS more and more.
For me it was more the bit at the end with Sloan. He sees Jim and Maggie in the conference room and gets concerned again. This time enough to say something to Sloan. Poor Sloan has no sense of these things. .

It was the first time where I felt like we got to see that he really cares about Maggie and why she might continue to got back to him after breaking up with I'm so often. (I'm not counting the last episode and the flowers. That was Valentines day. That's artificial.)
marymary
Jul. 30th, 2012 11:36 pm (UTC)
OH AND did you guys notice that we got (as expected) the disdainful characterization of "the internet?" The faceless, homogenous, idiotic, cowardly and (apparently) racist masses?

So...News Night HAS to air website user comments, which are apparently consistently stupid. They have to. I feel so bad for Will, forced to deal with that every night. If only there were some way he could change the show.
marymary
Jul. 30th, 2012 11:43 pm (UTC)
He sees Jim and Maggie in the conference room and gets concerned again. This time enough to say something to Sloan.

Yes. I loved his line to Sloan, something like, "Are you usually good at knowing these things?" "No."
aunt_deen
Jul. 31st, 2012 12:28 am (UTC)
I refuse to believe that a show like News Night would not get a fair crop of thoughtful, intelligent comments that Will could harvest for the show.

Granted, there are a lot of idiots out there in netland, who hide behind their usernames saying ugly and cowardly things, but it's hardly universal. And the implication that the wish to remain anonymous MUST stem from cowardice is insulting.

I like to get into debates on all kinds of sites. It's a pretty rare day that I don't post a comment or two on at least one article on Yahoo or Comcast. I've even had one of my comments quoted in a follow-up news article. Which was kind of awesome.

But if I had to attach my actual identity to that comment? No thank you. I do not want the flood of attention that could easily cause. I step into the debate when I wish and it's just as easy to step out.
marymary
Jul. 31st, 2012 12:58 am (UTC)
Granted, there are a lot of idiots out there in netland, who hide behind their usernames saying ugly and cowardly things, but it's hardly universal.

Yeah I'm guessing everyone here understands and agrees with you. This is just Aaron, whose opinion of those on the net seems, if anything, to have narrowed since the days of mumus and Parliaments. :)
aunt_deen
Jul. 31st, 2012 01:06 am (UTC)
Yup. I have vivid memories of lemonlyman.com. ;)
elinorigbe
Jul. 31st, 2012 02:57 pm (UTC)
This is just Aaron, whose opinion of those on the net seems, if anything, to have narrowed since the days of mumus and Parliaments. :)

And this, in spite, or perhaps because, of all the research he did before writing "The Social Media."
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