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The Newsroom – S2, Ep. 2 – “The Genoa Tip”

Tonight’s episode of The Newsroom ended with a common reaction for me. I’ve felt this way many times before with this show. It’s really as simple as being summarized in two words:so good.

The Newsroom is one of those rare shows where it seems to get better with age. Even though we’re only two episodes in to Season 2, you can just feel that these characters are maturing with the show. No one is remaining stagnant. Although some of the underlying issues remain from the very beginning, everyone is different. They’re all handling things differently, and it’s proving to be a seriously entertaining hour of TV.

Another strength of this show is its pacing. Things move so quickly that it nearly makes your head spin. I don’t ever seem to truly appreciate this during the episodes, but when I’m reflecting on what I just watched afterward, it continually blows my mind how much ground is covered. I don’t think that people (myself included) really comprehend the balancing act this must be. I certainly wouldn’t want to be the one making these decisions, that’s for sure.

One point in particular that I really loved about “The Genoa Tip” was the focus on Don. I know that, in the beginning, I only liked Don because of his phenomenal ability to banter. I’m fairly certain that I am not alone in that feeling. It was pretty clear that, from the beginning, he was made out to be “the asshole.” However, that has drastically changed for me. It was almost like we, as the viewers, really got to learn a bit about Don tonight. Up until this point, we had primarily known him for his struggles with Maggie. Tonight, though, we get a glimpse of something that Don is truly passionate about. I really enjoyed this, and hope that we get more of this as the season progresses with some of the other characters.

I also have to comment about the development of Will. Although I wish there was a bit more of him on the desk, I’m really digging the way that they are showing that he is human. This really began to happen a lot more towards the end of Season 1, but I like the continuation in this direction. I believe that Will googling websites dedicated to hating him keeps his character grounded. The dialogue between him and MacKenzie continues to be some of the most entertaining, so I look forward to how his character will continue to evolve.

Finally, I’ve had a bit of a change of heart with the “fake” story at the heart of the plot. As the name suggests, we make some more headway with the central plot of this mysterious black op “Genoa.” As I mentioned in my review of Episode 1, I wasn’t crazy about having a fake story be so central to The Newsroom. After seeing the developments this week, I’m warming up a bit to the idea. The reason for the change of heart is simply because they are able to work this unbelievable story without being constricted to keeping it within the walls of the truth. The Genoa story can be molded as the writers see fit, which, I believe, will make for some compelling drama down the road.

I’m also finding that the fact that this story is not real doesn’t weigh on me as much as I thought it would. It’s very easy to forget that this isn’t based in reality because of the way that it has been delivered. I’m loving the fact that we already know that much of the team is in deep shit because of this Genoa story. It makes their efforts, which really begin to come together in Episode 2, seem so helpless. I wanted to scream to Jerry or MacKenzie and tell them to stop. It certainly adds a level of intensity to an already complex plot.

Overall, I thought this episode was fantastic. We spent ample time with all of the main characters, while there was some focus on a couple of characters who have not had the spotlight on them previously. The Newsroom continues to be one of my favorite shows, and is, without a doubt, one of your best options on TV at the moment.

Score: 9/10

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