The Newsroom returned to TV recently for its second season for the show. This episode starts off with the characters we followed in season one being questioned by lawyers for a crisis yet to unfold during this season. What’s happened or how it happened the viewer doesn’t get to know but we get glimpses through the questions asked and answered between the lawyer Rebecca Halliday (Marcia Gay Hardon) and McAvoy (Jeff Daniels).
This first episode for the season brings with it two new characters for the show. The first being the lawyer Rebecca Halliday who is questioning all of the Newsroom team about the incident. Rebecca carries quite a lot of power as a character and questions everything quite seriously, not laughing at any of McAvoy’s jokes. I don’t know what to make of her yet, I guess I’ll have to see how she develops as the season progresses. The other new character added to this episode is Jerry Dantana (Hamish Linklater) who seems to be an ambitious new journalist added in to replace Jim who left to cover another story. I’m not sure how liked he is by the other characters especially Mackenzie McHale but he seems eager to gain her approval through suggesting stories. Dantana in this episode gains quite a good lead for a story. I’m just wondering if it’s the same one that will get the whole team into all the trouble they are in?
Apart from the new characters added into this season which are interesting enough I didn’t really like how the episode flowed especially as a season opener. I’m not really a fan of TV episodes, movies or anything that start off in some future point like this one did with all the lawyers questioning the team, then move us to the past so we can see how the characters get there. At first I thought this was just isolated to one episode but by the time it ended I realised this may continue throughout the entire season. Luckily the show is quite well written by Sorkin so I imagine the show will continue on a certain level of quality throughout, it’s just I’m not such a fan of jumping around with a story line.
Moving away from the style of story telling I do still really like the way the characters interact and speak to each other in the Newsroom. I particularly like the dialogue between Mackenzie McHale (Emily Mortimer) and Will McAvoy in this show and will keep watching because of it. Other characters like Sloan Sabbith (Olivia Munn) and Charlie Skinner (Sam Waterston) are always interesting to watch as well and I like the dynamic between all these four as they try cover the news and balance against other characters.
The show continues to be well written and I think Sorkin and the rest of the Newsroom team try hard to stay current with what is happening in the world to add context to what the characters are doing. This episode makes mention of such things like Taliban, the occupy movement, Sopa and many more stories that happened during the year. I like this as part of the series as it makes it feel so much more real like the characters could exist in the world we live in today. But in saying that as these stories make the show so current I do think jumping around with the shows main story line which will be the theme for the season this year may make everything we see on screen seem like we are watching the team make old news. I don’t know if this will happen or not, as I said the show is well written so I look forward to seeing how it unfolds.
Acting wise the return of this series is strong and all actors seem well fit for their characters. As for all the acting scenes I didn’t really like the break up scene between Maggie Jordan (Alison Phil) and Don Keefer (Thomas Sadoski). I just thought that of all the scenes in the show and in this episode, with all the build up of their relationship so far, it was sort of a let down. I didn’t feel that the scene had much emotional impact and the discovery and playing of the video to me seemed awkward for the characters. I do like the other performances though and as I said previously about the story telling I do think that many of the actor’s share the same great character dynamics that come through because of the writing and the acting for this show.
Overall the season return of the newsroom was quite good, but in some parts I think it lacked. I personally don’t like the story telling form chosen for this season but I can tolerate it enough to keep watching it. While I do like watching the characters in this show, the episode didn’t have much of a character focus and was instead based around setting up the plot for the season, so the viewer understands it’s going to be jumping around. This time jump was well contrasted by giving Maggie a haircut as we saw in the opening and closing. I like this episode and it was entertaining, I just hope the rest of the season has more to offer.