I skipped out on recapping last week’s episode of The Newsroom because I found it a bit dull (yet still watched it 11 times). Will had a sweet moment on ACN Morning and the Operation Genoa story continued to unveil, but too much of it was tiresome. I was tired of Lugubrious Will, Cock Blocked Jim, and Not Getting Any Action Don. Thankfully, this week’s episode was thunderous. It was dramatic and ended with a stentorian roar. Let’s start at the ending.
Leona Lansing is Mariano Rivera: Jane Fonda came in at the end of this episode of The Newsroom and made it her bitch. She completely owned it and starred in the best scene of the season (possibly the second-best Newsroom scene ever behind Will’s speech at Northwestern in s1e1). Her character, Atlantis World Media CEO Leona Lansing, dominated the last three and half minutes of the show with a passionate, charged, and hilarious diatribe. It showed so many sides of her character — her toughness, her wonderfully harsh sense of humor, and her hidden love for Atlantis Cable News. It was a thrilling way to close the show and reminded me of Mariano Rivera closing out an exciting Yankee game.
Don Keefer Lights it Up: Naturally, the best episode of the season kicked of with The Newsroom’s best character. Don was at his sardonic best, “working” with ACN’s lawyer. He also had several great moments in the “Red Team” meetings — sharp lines that only Don Keefer can deliver with the proper bite. While Don is no closer to a relationship with Sloan Sabbith than he was in s2e1, he’s still the coolest cat in the newsroom. This character rules.
A Few Good Men (and Women): One of the reasons I enjoyed this episode so much was that it was a legal drama. Twelve Angry Men, A Few Good Men, and Primal Fear are some of my favorite movies of all time. In this episode, The Newsroom’s use of real-world events and romantic comedy took a backseat to the legal drama. Having ACN’s lawyer played by the excellent Marcia Gay Harden helped too. Hmmmm, the people that say that The Newsroom portrays women as fools need to look at the characters played by Jane Fonda and Marcia Gay Harden. Those ladies are tough.
Brian Fantana Jerry Dantana doctored some raw footage of a key Operation Genoa interview so that it would tell the story he wanted told. When the interviewee insisted on leaving March Madness basketball games playing in the background (s2e6), I knew that the shot clock would play a role in the Operation Genoa report unraveling. Honestly, I thought it was silly that nobody caught it. You had the news teams from two shows and 30 ACN lawyers combing over the material. While I understand that the enormity of the story was foremost on their minds, I don’t see how all of them missed the shot clock jumping back and forth. I was kind of disappointed that MacKenzie was the one that eventually spotted it. It seemed like something Slumdog Millionaire would have sleuthed.
Sloan Dislocates Her Shoulder: Sloan Sabbith didn’t do a lot in this episode, which means that Olivia Munn didn’t have many opportunities for unbelievable acting (playing a character that has two doctorates is one thing, but playing someone embarrassed by naked photos is completely unbelievable). Since dear Olivia was denied the opportunity to offend, you should watch her dislocate her shoulder. The video is a week old, but it’s still frickin’ hilarious!