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The Newsroom

Discussion in 'Off The Beaten Track' started by Holley Calmes, Jun 27, 2012.

  1. Holley Calmes

    Holley Calmes Well-Known Member

    Did anybody watch the first episode, and perhaps "The Making Of..." ? It's being treated so reverentially, I wondered if anyone saw it and what they thought.
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2012
  2. milanessa

    milanessa engaged to dupa

    Not me. The teasers looked interesting but I don't subscribe to HBO.
  3. AliasJohnDoe

    AliasJohnDoe Headcase Addict

    I loved it.

    But I love most HBO and Showtime series.
  4. Cachoo

    Cachoo Well-Known Member

    Sorkin fan: I'm in for better or worse and I enjoyed the first episode.
  5. Tinami Amori

    Tinami Amori Well-Known Member

    The first episode was fantastic. Let's hope they can keep it up, which would be hard. Best show on US TV i've seen in years.

    The dialogues and use of language is fantastic, like art-work.
  6. KHenry14

    KHenry14 Well-Known Member

    I love me some Sorkin to be sure, and this one seems as good as the rest of his shows. Allison Pill is beautifully cast as Jeff Daniels' assistant, and John Gallagher Jr. looks to be very good as the nerdy senior producer.

    Too bad that this show is getting a lot of bad reviews. I hope people give it a chance.
  7. vesperholly

    vesperholly Well-Known Member

    I found it entertaining, but the characters stereotypical. I hope they can expand on that in more episodes. I've also read several bad reviews.
  8. MarieM

    MarieM Grumpy Cynical Ice Dance Lover

    Too many bad reviews for me to hope it'll last, but I loved it anyway :)
  9. Holley Calmes

    Holley Calmes Well-Known Member

    I know, I was sort of amazed at the bad reviews. I did have trouble with all the screaming and put-downs and heavy handedness combined with the rat-a-tat-tat dialogue which everyone seems to love so much. BUT-I had had a very rough day at work and was already punch drunk, so maybe that was my problem. Richard loved it, and we decided we'd give it another shot.

    I do think it's terribly self-conscious, but there's no doubt it's excellently made. I do care about Jeff Daniels' little assistant and the young man who came in with Daniels' ex-girlfriend-producer whatever she is. (She's gorgeous but totally unbelievable.) It felt like they were all just trying too hard and were so very, very, very serious and a bit sanctimonious.

    Maybe they'll relax and we can add in a wee bit of humor and lightness that's still sharp and relevant. Think Boston Legal! Well, don't, because this is a totally different show. I know that. But it was like eating a whole chocolate pound cake which was delicious but just too filling.
  10. Wyliefan

    Wyliefan Well-Known Member

    Um, it's Sorkin. Sanctimonious is his middle name. ;) Yeah, not such a big fan here. Of course he's very, very talented; the problem is that he's very, very, VERY aware of it.

    And I can't get over "Mackenzie MacHale." I hope they don't plan for her to get back together with her ex, or there's a chance she could one day be Mackenzie MacHale McAvoy.
  11. pixie cut

    pixie cut Well-Known Member

    I liked it. I didn't love it. I found the "making of" pieces that aired before the first episode were more intriguing the show itself. It's very watchable, so I'll be back next Sunday.
  12. AliasJohnDoe

    AliasJohnDoe Headcase Addict

    I don't really listen to the critics/reviewers. I like to make up my own mind on whether something is good or bad. Paid critics/reviewers seem to have an agenda in their opinion today. And most of the time I dislike what the critics love, and love what the critics dislike.
  13. milanessa

    milanessa engaged to dupa

    I think most people do - what you can glean from the reviews is whether or not a show is likely to last. No sense in getting too invested in it if it's dropped quickly. There have been instances of viewers protesting and saving shows but that's a long shot.
  14. As I wrote in the general TV thread ...

    Sorkin series pilot script checklist:

    ~ Lead character facing imminent job crisis: check
    ~ Lead characters with a romantic past: check
    ~ Crusty-but-wise boss: check
    ~ Bright young thing who's just starting out and seems timid but you just know is bound to go far: check
    ~ Walk-and-talk: check
    ~ People who are incredibly passionate about their jobs: check
    ~ Grandiose speeches: check
    ~ An idealized-in-a-good way workplace, and by extension an idealized-in-a-good-way America: check

    In case you can't tell ... I enjoyed it. Despite the stereotypes and the predictable formula. But I'm biased, I've loved just about everything Sorkin has done. I don't even get HBO, I was so eager to see this I tracked it down by, um, less legit means.

    My only criticism, and it's small, was that I thought the profanity in the opening scene was unrealistic and unnecessary. It was like "Hey, this is HBO and we've gone 5 minutes without swearing ..." And I'm someone who curses like a sailor and is not the least bit offended by four-letter words -- I just thought it was jarring in this context.

    (It's funny, in Studio 60 there was an episode about a guy who'd written a series about the UN. He wanted to sell it to a cable channel thinking it would find a better home there, but Jordan wanted it for her network because she though it deserved as wide an audience as possible. I couldn't help but think of that this show could have deleted the swearing and been right at home on a network.)

    Re: negative reviews etc., I've always had the sense that a cable series is more likely to go its whole season despite ratings and reviews. Might not last more than a season, but not likely to be yanked after only a couple of episodes. Particularly subscriber-based cable stations like HBO that don't have the same reliance on selling ad space. But I could be completely wrong about that.

    p.s. I looked up Emily Mortimer after watching to try to remember what else I'd seen her in besides Dear Frankie and some British TV stuff ... and discovered that her father is John Mortimer! Never made that connection before!
  15. Habs

    Habs Well-Known Member

    I loved it, but I watched it with the bias of being a Sorkin fan.
    In addition to that, both Mr. Habs and I come from a news background (both of us are former journalists), so it was all that much more interesting. Love it!
  16. julieann

    julieann Well-Known Member

    I think you pretty much summed it up.

    The show seems to have been done before, although I do watch a ton of TV. I really didn't think it was anything spectacular. HBO has better things to offer.

    A free podcast of the pilot is on iTunes until July 23rd.
  17. Matryeshka

    Matryeshka Well-Known Member

    I don't mind stereotypes and predictable formula so long as it's well-done. I'd rather watch an unoriginal idea done well than a new idea that's horribly executed.

    I liked it. I didn't love it, I didn't hate it. I'll definitely tune in next week, but I wouldn't stay home to watch it either or feel compelled to post as it's happening.
  18. WildRose

    WildRose Well-Known Member

    I liked it a lot - looking forward to seeing more episodes.
  19. icecat

    icecat Active Member

    HBO? not worth the $
  20. pixie cut

    pixie cut Well-Known Member

    I think HBO is totally worth the dollars. I watch several original series and some movies.
  21. AliasJohnDoe

    AliasJohnDoe Headcase Addict

    Me too. I think I've had HBO since 1980. Love my HBO and Showtime. Some of the best shows on TV.
  22. gkelly

    gkelly Well-Known Member

    I got HBO a few years ago as part of a package when I needed to get Universal Sports to watch skating.

    Now US is no longer available to me :(, but meanwhile I have gotten hooked on HBO. Couldn't afford to get Showtime as well, but I catch up on a few of their shows after the fact via Netflix.

    The acting and production quality of much of what's on broadcast TV is painful to me after having watched very little TV at all (besides skating) for a number of years and then mostly cable shows that put more time into each episode.

    Anyway, I can foresee some problems with this show but there are also things I like about it, so I'm in for the season.
  23. AliasJohnDoe

    AliasJohnDoe Headcase Addict

    Years ago, only 1 HBO and 1 Showtime were available. Now when you order HBO and Showtime, you get multiple channels for the same price. (On satellite)

    Now when you order HBO, you get 8 channels. HBO-E, HBO2E, HBOSG, HBO-W, HBO2W, HBOFM, HBOCY, HBOLT.

    When you order Showtime, you get 6 channels. SHO-E, SHO-W, SHOTO, SHOCS, SHOEX, SBYND.
  24. milanessa

    milanessa engaged to dupa

    Their best stuff usually ends up on cable eventually - I can wait. :)
  25. ArtisticFan

    ArtisticFan Well-Known Member

    I actually resubscribed to HBO in large part because of this show (among other things). I was happy with the pilot and look forward to more.
  26. Meant to say earlier: I think it was smart to set the timeline for this as 2010 (or at least starting there). Lets them use real news stories as they really happened, like they did for the pilot, but I would imagine they'll use "fake" stories too as the series develops -- but without being not-current. One of the biggest oddities in The West Wing was being about "real world" politics but against the alternate-reality backdrop, esp. post-911.
  27. pixie cut

    pixie cut Well-Known Member

    HBO on Demand runs all these little features pertaining to its shows. I seem to recall seeing on after episode one that said they will focus on real news stories.
  28. So after watching episode 2, I'm noticing now Sorkin repeats himself not just in the broad strokes and characterizations, but in the tiny dialogue details as well. In the opening run-down meeting, the phrases "Muhammed al Muhammed al Muhammed al Bazir" and "were you distracted by a bumble-bee?" were used, both of which I recognized from The West Wing.

    I am finding it grating in places ... but still entertaining enough to keep going. For now at least. I'll be interested to see how they develop Olivia Munn's character (I've only ever seen her in The Daily Show). And I continue to love Sam Waterston as "the white Robert Guillaume."