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The Newsroom has given me a new disease

- July 9th, 2012

emily mortimer

I am experiencing a condition I just invented called “viewership schizophrenia” when it comes to The Newsroom.

The symptoms: I’m fully aware that it’s fairly terrible, and yet I’m still kind of enjoying it.

Two characters are bothering me the most right now, following Sunday night’s third episode on HBO (and HBO Canada, for those of us north of the border):

1) MacKenzie McHale, played by Emily Mortimer (pictured above). The overly awkward schoolgirl bit just doesn’t fly whenever her former boyfriend Will McAvoy (played by Jeff Daniels) is seen with another woman.

2) Charlie Skinner, played by Sam Waterston. What the hell is up with this bizarre over-the-top performance? Obviously he’s just doing what the directors want, but my God.

I didn’t have a great reaction to The Newsroom when I first watched it (my initial review for Sun Media/QMI Agency can be seen here). There has been a lot of debate among critics about the merits of this latest effort from Aaron Sorkin.

But there I was on Sunday night, watching episode three. I didn’t even know I was going to watch it until I found myself doing so.

Maybe I’m just automatically drawn to the subject matter on The Newsroom. And yet, the news/political stuff is notably wide-eyed, and when the series shifts into the personal lives of its characters it becomes a completely different show and smart people all instantly become disastrously dumb.

So what to make of my “viewership schizophrenia”? Is anyone else suffering with this affliction? Suggestions for treatment?

bill.harris@sunmedia.ca

@billharris_tv

 

 

 

 

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4 comments

  1. Sheena Goodyear | July 9, 2012 at 4:22 pm

    I think you’re experiencing what we call “hate-watching.”

  2. Bill Harris | July 9, 2012 at 4:34 pm

    That is a hilarious term, and oh, so accurate! What should I do, Sheena???

  3. Sheena Goodyear | July 9, 2012 at 5:27 pm

    Mock as you watch then write snarky episode reviews for our entertainment?

  4. Bill Harris | July 9, 2012 at 5:31 pm

    I like the way you think, Ms. Goodyear!

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