by Denette Wilford
I’ve never really considered myself an Aaron Sorkin fan, per se. I loved “The West Wing” and “Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip” (yes, both), and own the box set of the complete series (a.k.a. two seasons) of the fabulous “Sports Night.” After coming to terms with those facts, I realized just how much I like the guy. You either love him or loathe him, I think, because he has such an infuriating style, but Sorkin’s writing has always been stellar — and continues to be with “The Newsroom” — and he is able to get so much from his actors (though some might argue that’s the talent of the actors, not him).
“The Newsroom,” for the most part, has been reamed by critics. So, naturally, I dug it. Don’t get me wrong, there are some parts that are maddening and frustrating, for sure, but there’s nothing like it on television and Sorkin’s words have clearly been missed on the small screen.
In broad terms, “The Newsroom” is a combination of “The West Wing” and “Sports Night.” Like its predecessors, it has a fantastic cast, that sweeping music, the walk-and-talks, the rapid-fire dialogue (not since Lorelai and Rory Gilmore have characters talked so fast). But since it’s on HBO and not on, say, NBC or ABC, it stands a chance — because the show can deliver the goods at its own pace rather than try to appease network heads and accrue the numbers it needs to stay on the air.
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