HBO’s The Newsroom

HBO’s The Newsroom

The Newsroom has come and gone, but I’m playing catch up.  I love this show.  This show pushes for excellence in journalism, a long lost trait of today’s journalistic stories and sensationalism.  It demands better political candidates and via a news program showcases all the ridiculous behavior and words that come out of candidate’s mouths.  It does not hold back.  It challenges what it means to be a Republican or Democrat.  It breaks down stereotypes.

This show takes real world, not-so-distant past events and breaks down the story in a newsroom setting, showing how a broadcast is developed and what stories make the cut and the consequences of those decisions.  As someone who once wanted to pursue journalism I find it absolutely fascinating.

Over and over, Will McAvoy, the head news anchor, stands by his Republican beliefs.  He also is the first to point out absolute nonsense spewed from a Republican candidate’s mouth.  He challenges them.  He questions why they get to run for office.  He defends his ‘Republicanism’ and at the end of season 2 gives a speech that sums up elections today so clearly it is pure brilliance.

“I call myself a Republican because I am one.  I believe in market solutions and I believe in common sense realities and the necessity to defend ourselves against a dangerous world.  That’s about it.  Problem is now I have to be homophobic and count the number of times people go to church.  I have to deny facts and think scientific research is a long con.  I have to think poor people are getting a sweet ride and I have to have such a stunning inferiority complex that I fear education, intellect, in the 21st century.  The biggest requirement, really the only requirement, is that I have to hate Democrats.”

In defending his News station’s reporting of Republican candidates saying outlandish things:

“If Republicans do 14 crazy things in a month, does that mean the unbiased thing to do would be for us to concoct 13 additional crazy Democrat stories?”

Valid point Will.

I often wonder how Republicans feel.  Do they feel that pressure to conform to a stereotype?  It seems like the candidates definitely do.

Aaron Sorkin has developed and written some incredible shows and films in his day including The West Wing, A Few Good Men, The American President, Moneyball, and The Social Network, but this has to be by far, the most thought provoking and smart show he has ever done.

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