Red Team III
Original Air Date: Aug 25, 2013
Patricia Morris Buckley — Sr. Staff Writer
Finally, we get to the big pay-off of the season and probably the best episode of The Newsroom ever.
We learned more about the lawsuit that’s been framing the season (plus a shocking twist), the Genoa story is broadcast and the ACN team’s house of cards beginning to crumple. All with the sparkling dialogue we expect from Aaron Sorkin. Best of all, the emotional pay off came from all the character building he’s done throughout the season.
Here’s the shocker: This big lawsuit isn’t from the military, but from Jerry, who is suing for wrongful termination over the Genoa story. He claims the story failed not just because he tampered with an interview, but that it was an institutional failure. Yeah, right.
We go back in time with Red Team III (it’s explained the term comes from red blood cells attacking the white, blah, blah, blah), which made up of Will alone. The only one not gung-ho on the story is Jim, although Neal is a bit doubtful as well. But Will says he trusts Charlie and Mac and they air the story to a whopping 5.8 million viewers – or as Will calls it “I Love Lucy numbers.”
They expect an immediate response from the Pentagon, but they get silence for 48 hours before hearing that the government is exploring “any and all legal remedies,” including charges of espionage. Elliott follows up on the story by interviewing Col. Sweeney again and it comes out that Sweeney had a traumatic brain injury (TBI), which often comes with memory loss. Then Mac realizes she may have asked the third witness leading questions.
She goes to check the general’s tape and discovers that Jerry doctored it but not the shot clock for the basketball game on TV in the background. The worse is when Charlie goes to check on his source and it turns out his “deep throat” was seeking revenge. His son had been let go as an intern at CAN, then committed suicide.
So, the whole story was a sham. Mac, Charlie, Will and Sloan all turn in their resignations, then we get this great scene with Jane Fonda as ACN’s owner, Lee Lansing. She comes in with a killer dress and refuses their resignations (wasn’t she trying to fire Will at the end of last season?). Charlie protests: “We won’t have the trust of the public anymore.”
“Well,” she answers, “get it back!” We’ll have to wait two weeks to find out how that happens. Just as the series was getting really good!
Did you figure out Jerry was behind the lawsuit? Was he right that the institution failed? How will the staff recover? Give us your TwoCents…