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Old 07-09-2012, 08:54 AM   #1
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The Newsroom S01E03 "The 112th Congress" 7/8/2012

OK first episode felt like "this is who Will is and what Will has done" second was like "This is how the newsroom is and how we do news" now the third feels like "This is how the show is going to be from now on".

Although they are saying they are fair and balanced and presenting news and facts seems like they are trying to be political just by going after the Tea Party. That could all change though once they hit Occupy Wall Street territory.
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Old 07-09-2012, 09:01 AM   #2
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This episode was much better than the 2nd one.
I really like Sam Waterston's character. And Jane Fonda was surprisingly good.
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Old 07-09-2012, 09:28 AM   #3
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They say The West Wing is the liberal fantasy of what the Clinton administration should have been, without the scandals.

Is this supposed to be Keith Olbermann without the d-baggery?
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Old 07-09-2012, 10:02 AM   #4
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Although they are saying they are fair and balanced and presenting news and facts seems like they are trying to be political just by going after the Tea Party. That could all change though once they hit Occupy Wall Street territory.
They specifically stated they were not going to be fair and balanced. As Charlie says to Jane Fonda

"Balance is irrelevant to me, it doesn't have anything to do with truth logic or reality"
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Old 07-09-2012, 10:42 AM   #5
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I completely enjoyed the episode. Someone mentioned that reviewers who were shown more than just the first two episodes felt the shows got worse and worse, I wholeheartedly disagree there. The third episode surpassed the first two, easily.
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Old 07-09-2012, 10:52 AM   #6
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They specifically stated they were not going to be fair and balanced. As Charlie says to Jane Fonda

"Balance is irrelevant to me, it doesn't have anything to do with truth logic or reality"
"Reality has a well-known liberal bias." -- Stephen Colbert
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Old 07-09-2012, 10:55 AM   #7
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I liked what they were saying, but I think that they haven't found the funny to mix in with the message. The West Wing could deliver this type of thing and then wrap it up with a spot of humor to lighten things up. This was just a series of clip shots of Will bringing the slapdown.

(Don't get me wrong I like seeing that, but it needs more mix. Or more of the writers meetings where you get more than the soundbite of saying "you're wrong, that's not the fact")
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Old 07-09-2012, 03:32 PM   #8
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I would not be surprised at all if Charlie was fired at the start of the next ep.
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Old 07-09-2012, 03:54 PM   #9
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I'm pretty apolitical, so fictional shows with political rantings that are left or right usually don't bug me. What I do depend on for entertainment though is that the rantings are delivered eloquently. When listening to someone's political rantings in real life I'll cut them slack on the eloquent, but they need to be original. Recitations from a party playbook turns me off pretty quick. I have friends who's political discussions seem to be limited to repeating sound bites or bumper stickers.

I liked it when they had the 2 Tea Party drones talking about how they were all grassroots. In spouting this, what they said was almost verbatim with what had been discussed earlier. It was fun watching their faces as they either learned the truth about who was pulling their strings or had what they knew to be the truth was being outed.
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Old 07-09-2012, 06:17 PM   #10
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They specifically stated they were not going to be fair and balanced. As Charlie says to Jane Fonda

"Balance is irrelevant to me, it doesn't have anything to do with truth logic or reality"
In the second episode they made clear they weren't going to be balanced for the sake of balance alone. That infuriates me about news today. You have 9,999 scientists who can provide tons of proof for a theory, and 1 guy who believes it's wrong based on readings he got from something he built in his basement out of old milk cartons, but you give the same airtime to both. This is ludicrous and gives legitimacy to the craziest theories out there, just to make television more entertaining.

That's not news. "Balance" doesn't mean you have to give equal opportunity to facts and lies.

On the other hand issues like immigration, etc. have real, legitimate arguments on both sides. Those should get equal airtime and balanced coverage with articulate supporters of the various positions, and real discussion rather than insults and shouting.

Does saying that make me a liberal? I don't think so.
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Old 07-09-2012, 06:43 PM   #11
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I felt for Congressman Bookman (Seinfeld reference). I remember when you used to be able to campaign on your ability to work with other people to get things done. Now you can't seem to get elected in some districts unless you demonize the other party and swear an oath to never even eat at the same table as them.
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Old 07-09-2012, 07:32 PM   #12
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Now you can't seem to get elected in some districts unless you demonize the other party and swear an oath to never even eat at the same table as them.
Of course, just because he thinks that is why people did not vote for him does not mean it is really the reason.
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Old 07-09-2012, 11:29 PM   #13
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You have 9,999 scientists who can provide tons of proof for a theory, and 1 guy who believes it's wrong based on readings he got from something he built in his basement out of old milk cartons, but you give the same airtime to both. This is ludicrous and gives legitimacy to the craziest theories out there
Says the guy with the handle "madscientist".
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Old 07-10-2012, 03:57 AM   #14
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For me, it's Sam Waterston who retains my strongest interest in the show.

As for how the show approaches issues, it is of course from a more liberal perspective. News events are usually about facts, but political disagreements are often about conflicting principles, values, and ideals. On those issues, you do need to maintain balance.


So far, its interesting to watch.
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Old 07-10-2012, 06:10 AM   #15
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I liked this episode. I'll keep watching because

1. there are no other shows to watch (till BB).
2. it's different from other shows.
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Old 07-10-2012, 09:02 AM   #16
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Says the guy with the handle "madscientist".
Yes, but I am a professional!
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Old 07-10-2012, 10:34 AM   #17
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I enjoyed it, although I thought it was getting a little preachy about the message.

Only real annoyance I had was that it appears they'll continue playing the "Maggie is emotionally frail" bit for a while. It's getting old already.
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Old 07-10-2012, 01:43 PM   #18
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They specifically stated they were not going to be fair and balanced. As Charlie says to Jane Fonda

"Balance is irrelevant to me, it doesn't have anything to do with truth logic or reality"
I was really liking the personal stuff in the show, and there were some really funny lines. But the political stuff is pretty hard to take if you don't agree with it. The fact that it's real people and real events makes it worse than West Wing. If you use real people and events then you are having a real political discussion. I wouldn't watch this political show any more than I'd watch Bill Maher. It's a shame because I like the writing and the characters.
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Old 07-10-2012, 02:31 PM   #19
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I wouldn't watch this political show any more than I'd watch Bill Maher.
I agree. I watch them both equally.
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Old 07-10-2012, 05:14 PM   #20
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I cant believe how fast the show goes by. It seems like it just got going and the hour was up already.
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Old 07-11-2012, 05:56 AM   #21
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I wouldn't watch this political show any more than I'd watch Bill Maher. It's a shame because I like the writing and the characters.
To Sorkin's credit, Maher is simply a lousy, bitter comedian. Newsroom at least tries to elevate the dialogue.
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Old 07-11-2012, 06:22 AM   #22
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To Sorkin's credit, Maher is simply a lousy, bitter comedian.
Maher's a strange case...I actually liked him until 9/11, his bizarre affection for Ann Coulter nothwithstanding. Then, he had the "courage" debacle, after which he was terrified of offending anybody for a while, which of course destroyed his act. And when he recovered he was, well, bitter and lousy. It was like he was pretending to be the same guy he was before 9/11, but couldn't remember what that was like and so has become a kind of vicious parody of himself.

Plus stupid. I don't remember him being as stridently anti-science as he is now, although maybe it just didn't come up back then.
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Old 07-11-2012, 10:07 AM   #23
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Plus stupid. I don't remember him being as stridently anti-science as he is now, although maybe it just didn't come up back then.
I don't see this at all. He's always bitching about things like people who don't believe in global warming when the studies are right in front of them.

How is he anti-science?
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Old 07-11-2012, 10:34 AM   #24
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I don't see this at all. He's always bitching about things like people who don't believe in global warming when the studies are right in front of them.

How is he anti-science?
I shouldn't say "anti-science"; it's more that he doesn't let science get in the way of his beliefs. He's opposed to stupidity when it comes to things like religion or climate change, but he embraces it when it comes to things like vaccinations, pharmaceuticals, etc.
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Old 07-11-2012, 11:28 AM   #25
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It's interesting to look back at the big swing in the Tea Party ideology with the smugness of hindsight. A show like this can only address it somewhat interestingly because of time. I hope they never catch up to the present and then start making up stories. I don't have confidence in Sorkin to do that well.

I liked episode 1 by far the most. This one was also quite good, and the prior one was fun but not as good. Despite how much I liked this episode, however, it is quite evident that the romantic plot arcs will be as bad or worse than the ones in Sorkin's other shows -- which themselves were abysmal. This is certainly his achilles heel and I have never liked any of his romantic plot arcs.

I have also already grown tired of the background orchestral music in this show -- again, a trademark of Sorkin's work. Thankfully this and the romance stuff aren't in the forefront as much as in past shows and the main content of this show is extremely entertaining and rewarding, if perhaps not totally believable. Also, some of the "real" music fit in well, at least.
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Old 07-11-2012, 07:52 PM   #26
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I completely enjoyed the episode. Someone mentioned that reviewers who were shown more than just the first two episodes felt the shows got worse and worse, I wholeheartedly disagree there. The third episode surpassed the first two, easily.
Yeah. Clearly many of the reviewers got too caught up in their own political bias to review the show for being a tv show.
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Old 07-11-2012, 07:55 PM   #27
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It's going to be hard to have discussion threads on this show without it getting into politics. I am able to filter out the political ideology of the writer and just watch it for what it is. An entertaining show.
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Old 07-11-2012, 07:57 PM   #28
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For me, it's Sam Waterston who retains my strongest interest in the show.

As for how the show approaches issues, it is of course from a more liberal perspective. News events are usually about facts, but political disagreements are often about conflicting principles, values, and ideals. On those issues, you do need to maintain balance.

So far, its interesting to watch.
I do want to third, fourth or fifth the Sam waterson praise. He is excellent. I was talking to my mom about this and she told me the first time she saw him in something he was a straw hat wearing hillbilly who danced around ridivulously.
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Old 07-12-2012, 08:36 AM   #29
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I shouldn't say "anti-science"; it's more that he doesn't let science get in the way of his beliefs. He's opposed to stupidity when it comes to things like religion or climate change, but he embraces it when it comes to things like vaccinations, pharmaceuticals, etc.
Aren't we ALL like that? Everyone looks for arguments that support their beliefs. It's called human nature. I'm not defending Maher, but I don't think he's any different than those of FNC or MSNBC who consider themselves a so called expert and then pick out this factoid or that to support their position.

I will admit to being a fan of Maher's if for no other reason I find his show fun. But, there is a lot I disagree with him about.
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Old 07-12-2012, 09:10 AM   #30
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But in his case it's a bit more hypocritical, since he's doing exactly what he lambasts others for doing...i.e., ignoring the scientific evidence when it doesn't fit his opinion.
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