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The Newsroom - Episode 2.04 - Unintended Consequences - Review

For weeks I had been thinking about Maggie's trip to Uganda, for weeks I imagined what she went through that caused her to alter her appearance so drastically. Never did my mind expect such a simple but poignant story. It's simplicity made it all that more heartbreaking, it was a gut wrenching story that was only excelled by Allison Pill's performance. 

It also made me wonder have all the horrifying drama's and news stories I watched over the years desensitized me to anything less than bloodshed, torture or even rape? Because honestly, that was what I was expecting to happen. My stomach in knots every time we went back to Maggie's story, expecting something horrifying to happen. But it was a story about a boy called Daniel, who was fascinated by a girl with long blonde hair. I could recap how the story goes, but I won't as you should really see it for yourself. 

The Maggie we knew is obviously gone, now haunted by guilt for pursuing this story to Uganda. What led to Maggie's story being told throughout the flashbacks was that she was now being deposed by ACN's lawyer Rebecca Halliday (played by Marcia Gay Harden) in a wrongful termination suit concerning Genoa. The subject of the deposition was whether or not Maggie was mentally healthy enough to function as a credible witness. The fact that she isn't taking her prescribed medicine is worrying. And I think we can safely assume it's Jerry Dantana's (played by Hamish Linklater) job that is lost in the end, he's the one aggressively pursuing this story and he's the one who got the tip in the first place.

Speaking of Genoa, the story hit another snag and rebound this week. At first it appeared all leads were dead as twitter user 'Hamni8' hadn't twittered in over 2 years. Unable to follow up on the source of the tweets, it was Jerry who literally wished for a stroke of luck that a lead would fall into their laps. And surely it did, or rather, it punched Neal (played by Dev Patel) in the gut.

Shelly Wexler (played by Aya Cash), spokesperson for Occupy Wall Street, went on the air with Will McAvoy (played by Jeff Daniels). After Will telling Neal last week that he would give the story some airtime, he totally destroyed Shelly on tv. And as much as I am 'part of the 99 percent', I agreed with Will. Occupy Wall Street spent so much of it's time standing for everything, that in the end they stood for nothing. So the only person who had a lead on the Genoa story stormed out of the building, hurt and humiliated and I can't say I blame her. 

The way Will went about it dressing her down was something else entirely. He was a smug and obnoxious as ever. However punching Neal because of how she felt was just childish and when Shelly belittlelingly reminded Sloan (played by Olivia Munn) that she was a college professor I felt she was just sad. It did get us some golden comedy with Sloan and Don (played by Thomas Sadoski) though as they tried to appeal to her but were just put off by her. But I liked how Will came around in the end, though still being obnoxious at first, and apologized for his crisis of confidence. Even after the Genoa story was back on track because they found the guy without the help of Shelly.

Miles away in New Hampshire Jim's (played by John Gallagher Jr.) story also came to a head. After another series of failures Jim seems to have finally given up on covering Romney's campaign. Getting kicked of the bus wasn't enough: Jim, Hallie (played by Grace Gummer) and Tequila (played by Cameron Gharaee) got cut from covering the campaign as well. Now missing campaign stories left and right both MacKenzie (played by Emily Mortimer) and Hallie's boss Evan weren't too happy about it. Turns out Hallie's boss Evan is a pig and in the end Jim sacrifices himself to get her the '30 minutes with the candidate' he has sought since the beginning. This stunt gets him pulled from covering the campaign, but he doesn't seem to truly mind. It's kind of gratifying to see Jim give up about the place he obviously doesn't belong and his likely return to the Newsroom. The kiss with Hallie wraps up the story neatly, though I wouldn't be surprised if she still shows up later on. 

With Uganda, the Romney campaign and Occupy Wall Street now, more or less, wrapped up the Genoa story will probably take center place. While the fallout of those individual stories will surely be felt in the episode to come, it is time to see what went so horribly wrong with the coverage of Genoa and what the consequences of the depositions will be. 

Overall it was another strong episode of the Newsroom, that is must see television based Maggie's story and Alison Pills performance alone. Though the episode as a whole hit all the right notes and was very good. I would have given the episode a perfect score weren't it for the convenience of how the Genoa story was continued, as it required a lot of suspension of disbelief. 



Pascal Buijnsters Pascal's a Dutchman and has been a longtime commentator on SpoilerTV and started out as a writer for SpoilerTV last year. He is quite a TV addict and writes for a local, Dutch, newspaper. Next to that he's into soccer for his local team, a gamer and a fanatical swimmer. He writes previews and reviews for SpoilerTV for a variety of shows.

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