As I mentioned yesterday, Aaron Sorkin’s new show The Newsroom, premiering on HBO Canada and HBO on Sunday at 10pm, is being ripped apart by critics. It’s not that they don’t have a point: Sorkin is sentimental, smug, preachy, wordy, and it can be infuriating the way he writes women. Can be. After all, this is the same man who also created CJ Cregg.
I can understand where they hate is coming from. I can see it myself. And still... I don’t. I mean I do. But I love it. I love hating it. Sorkin makes you shout at the TV but you want to keep shouting. And I guess that’s the point. Few writers inspire the same vitriol. A bad review is a bad review. But a passionate bad review is something else. It means that the reviewer was somehow still affected. Duana compared it to a Hate Read. You know what a Hate Read is? Click here for a better understanding of it.
I’m not sure The Newsroom is a Hate Watch. Hate Watches and Hate Reads are often ignorant. For some of you that would be The Bachelor. The Newsroom isn’t ignorant. It’s condescending but it’s not stupid. It will you make you mad but it won’t make you dumb.
Is idealism wrong?
Know better, do better, that’s what they claim to be aiming for in The Newsroom’s newsroom. Terribly unrealistic and naive but there are moments in The Newsroom, especially at the end of the fourth episode, where - and I have no other way of saying it so sorry that this is so corny - that my heart soared and I pumped my fist, I was so jacked that they were so jacked about being good and right at reporting the news.
There may be too a little Producer Porn in this. For people who work in television, The Newsroom is foreplay. For people who don’t work in television, it’s fantasy play. Remember how you felt watching The West Wing? Remember how you wanted to be CJ/Josh/Toby/or Sam? That’s The Newsroom. You either self-identify or you aspire.
Also, I really, really want Jeff Daniels to have a hit. Have you read his recent profile in Details? Click here. I love him.