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  • Series Premiere Date: Jun 24, 2012
  • Season #: 1 , 2
The Newsroom Image
Metascore
66

Generally favorable reviews - based on 20 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.3

Generally favorable reviews- based on 79 Ratings

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  • Summary: The second season of the drama picks up with ACN's News Night covering the capture of Muammar Gaddafi’s Tripoli compound, with Jim reporting on the Romney campaign, and Neal looking into the Occupy Wall Street movement. Meanwhile, Will McAvoy (Jeff Daniels) is in trouble for calling the Tea Party the American Taliban. Expand
  • Genre(s): Drama
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 20
  2. Negative: 0 out of 20
  1. Reviewed by: Ed Bark
    Jul 12, 2013
    91
    Few TV dramas are as thought-provoking or daringly opinionated. Sorkin doesn’t always get everything right. Who the hell does? But he writes with purpose, force and conviction, sometimes with a heavier hand than necessary.
  2. Reviewed by: Verne Gay
    Jul 11, 2013
    83
    Edgier, more sharply drawn, while that Sorkian chatter remains at a very high boil.
  3. Reviewed by: Oscar Moralde
    Jul 15, 2013
    75
    Yes, there's the same theatrical, slightly on-the-nose symbolic imagery, the recurrence of familiar narrative structures like legal depositions, and the grandiloquent speechifying of a comfortably centrist liberalism that sounds more progressive than it acts. Yet for those attuned to the Sorkin style, those excesses have their own kind of virtue, and season two of The Newsroom salvages the promise of becoming something urgent and vital.
  4. Reviewed by: Tim Goodman
    Jul 12, 2013
    70
    Season two at least appears stronger than last year but this all comes with a caveat, which is pretty much everything before this sentence. That is, Newsroom is the show we’re getting from Sorkin even if it might not, for some of us, be quite the show we wanted.
  5. Reviewed by: Sarah Rodman
    Jul 15, 2013
    67
    The Newsroom manages to be both precious and irritating at the same time, and Sorkin’s characters still have that habit of talking over each other, which might be realistic, but makes it hard for viewers to understand what the heck they’re sparring about.
  6. Reviewed by: Alan Sepinwall
    Jul 11, 2013
    58
    Though The Newsroom, like "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip" before it, is mostly Bad Sorkin on display, there are also those occasional flashes of Good Sorkin that make it worth sifting through the rest of the mess to find.
  7. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    Jul 10, 2013
    40
    Ultimately, one needn’t be a purveyor of snark to view The Newsroom as a disappointment--too smart to be dismissed, but so abrasive as to feel like Media Lectures for Dummies.

See all 20 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 12 out of 18
  2. Negative: 5 out of 18
  1. Jul 15, 2013
    10
    This is a great show. The second season had a bit of a rough history but as far as I can tell, the show is going great. Still funny and still extremely smart, The Newsroom is a fast paced show in which you must pay close attention. Also, to those who say that the show is "unrealistic", they should go watch the evening news. One of the better shows airing now. Expand
  2. Jul 30, 2013
    10
    This is an amazing show. The cast ensemble is mixed and work well off each other. The show is intelligent, fast paced and exciting. It hits the heart with its real stories and leaves the viewers thinking and wanting more. Expand
  3. Sep 5, 2013
    10
    Never have I EVER been so interested in politics. This show makes you laugh, cry, get nervous and also somehow feel more witty than everyone else all at the same time. I love the writing, You are constantly on the edge of your seat. I wish every show was written in this format of fast-talking two-conversation-at-a-time way. I loved social network and I love this show! Two thumbs WAY up! I will always be watching Expand
  4. Jul 17, 2013
    8
    Wow. Another season smashed by the critics. Surprise. I guess they don't like the media scrutinized. Nobody wants to be told they sold out and stink at their job. The season premiere was brilliant and they fixed some of the worst issues of season 1 by introducing a longer arc and killing the boring love triangle right away.
    For the record, nobody was "fired" from the show's first season. They only brought in new people and others moved on to shows where they would get to write actual scripts instead of helping with scripts written by Sorkin.
    Brilliant cast and great execution. Don't believe the trolls who post negative reviews just because they can't stand shows that dare to take position instead of schmoozing everyone or because they feel Republicans are not treated "fairly". Watch and get your own opinion.
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  5. Sep 6, 2013
    8
    The Newsroom is the voice of the forgotten center of the political spectrum, screaming to return to the heart of journalism, to turn away from news cycles more concerned with commercial viability than integrity. Its focus on near history's pivotal moments makes the drama feel all the more real. Collapse
  6. Aug 8, 2013
    4
    Four episodes into Season 2 and I'm sad to say that the show has become stale, boring, and lost its spark.

    Sorkin is a brilliant process
    and thematic writer but he utterly stinks at creating interpersonal relationships and sexual tension. He stunk at it on West Wing and he stunk at it on Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip. In the former, thankfully, he had fellow writers to help with the "relationship" angle and the latter didn't last long enough for it to matter. Unfortunately with this season of The Newsroom, the relationships between Will and Mac, Jim and Maggie, and Sloan and Don have taken center stage and the writing has been horrendous. To give example, Hallie, Jim's pseudo-love interest while he hides away from Maggie and the ACN New York Office on the Romney campaign, offers the groanworthy line of, "I'm the rebound." (Aside, so uninspired is the writing that Hallie boasts regularly about being a Vassar grad; The actress who plays Hallie, Grace Gummer, is, in fact, a Vassar grad and Sorkin doesn't even attempt to give the character any more depth.)

    In the original season of The Newsroom, the news and the process of reporting drove the story. It was the news of the day which allowed Mac, Will, and Charlie to become "renegades" in AWM. The actual news, despite being old, felt like a character in the story, much as the act of politics felt like a character in Sorkin's West Wing. In Season 2 however, the primary story is told, essentially, through the narrative of AWM lawyer Rebecca Halliday (played by Marcia Gay Harden). The news stories no longer drive the story forward and feel like ancillary issues that are just "getting in the way" of the fictional story of "Genoa". The character of Neal Sampat is a prime example of how this change is hurting the show. In season 1, Neal played several key roles while establishing himself in The Newsroom. Thus far, he's been used only as a "liason" to the Occupy Wall Street movement because he's a stereotypical 'tech savvy millennial' who saw the online OWS propaganda. Furthermore, his efforts were undermined by Sorkin's continued focus on the fictional "Genoa", forcing a contrived connection between Neal's OWS story and the overarching fictional story.

    Also, one my BIGGEST gripes of the show from the first season still remains: Olivia Munn's character, Sloan Sabbath, simply does not need to exist and Munn's acting abilities bring down the cast as a whole. Her character's educational background is utterly unbelievable and Munn simply doesn't have the acting chops to pull off the character. Instead of coming across as an expert in economics she comes across as a grade-A airhead who is just reciting memorized script lines. Compare that to Martin Sheen's "President Bartlett", who was also a fictional economist but actually sounded the part. Sloan is also a completely redundant character. Her character flaws are the exact same as the character flaws in the other female leads (Mac and Maggie) and her love interest storyline is no different than those of Mac, Maggie, Will, Jim, and Don. If there is any doubt that Munn was included in the cast solely for sex appeal for the 18-34 year old demographic, the teaser for episode 5 (unaired at the time of writing this) should remove any doubt. In Episode 5's previews, Sloan's newest storyline involves a "revenge porn scandal" with softcore pornographic pictures posted on the internet. This story is only made possible by utilizing Munn's Playboy photoshoot and further undermines her attempts to portray a character that is an economics expert or career journalist.

    To get back on track, Sorkin needs to bring in co-writers for the relationship angles, axe Sloan from the cast as the character's redundancy and lack of believable direction is wasting valuable writer time, and get back to letting news drive The Newsroom rather than trying to direct a fictional story or love triangle with actual news as props.
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  7. Jul 28, 2013
    1
    Quippy fake recycled aaron sorkin crap! Every character has the same lines, relationship and extreme level of glibness. The plot is not believable, but some of the acting is okay. Expand

See all 18 User Reviews