Sorkin screws up TV journalism in ‘The Newsroom’
In Aaron Sorkin’s “The Newsroom” (Sunday, 9
p.m., HBO), complacent TV anchor Will McAvoy
(Jeff Daniels) rediscovers his inner Edward
R. Murrow with the help of passionate new producer
(and old flame) MacKenzie McHale (Emily Mortimer).
All the Sorkin trademarks are here, familiar
from “The West Wing” including smart dialogue,
prickly professionals immersed in their high-powered
jobs, even the long tracking shots as characters
barrel down a hallway in mid-conversation.
What’s missing is the Sorkin magic. Those prickly
professionals are meant to be ultimately likable,
but so far Will is too overbearing and MacKenzie
too cutesy. That smart dialogue is showoffy
this time around, with groan-inducing references
to “The Merchant of Venice” and “Don Quixote.”
And Sorkin doesn’t convince us that he really
knows this setting. The people stand around
the newsroom making bogus patriotic speeches:
“There’s nothing more important in a democracy
than a well-informed electorate!” MacKenzie
In a presidential election year, who needs more
bogus patriotic speeches?
Monday, 9 p.m. (Bravo)
Bravo’s new reality series rolls out yet another
group of shameless narcissists. It introduces
us to three single relationship experts: matchmaker
Amy, radio host Emily and columnist Julia. Each
one offers the public a strict set of romantic
rules but – are you ready for the high concept?
– doesn’t take her own advice.
As a critic with high standards, I suggest that
you spend your time on a TV show with more socially
redeeming value. But I doubt if I’ll take my
own advice. “Miss Advised” is a trashy good