'The Newsroom' Recap: Back to the Daily Grind of Newsmaking

Aaron Sorkin's HBO show benefits by being more procedural and less philosophical.

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It's bad timing for Jim, who has already escaped the ACN newsroom to get away from Maggie and Don's ill-fated relationship. He volunteers to replace the network's embed on Mitt Romney's presidential campaign, who broke his ankle while drunk ("These guys are drunk every night," Mac exclaims. Charlie clarifies, "They're 23, they're on a bus in Nashua. They're drunk in the mornings, too."). Jim also meets the hostility Will has stirred up with his anti-tea party comments.

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Overall, the premiere showed some improvement over last season, particularly in its newfound focus on a more procedural – rather than philosophical – approach to understanding the news. This even goes for the legal mess that will engulf "News Night" over the fallout of their "Operation Genoa" story. In their conversations with the lawyer, Will and Mac suggest that a series of unfortunate events – at least those contained within Sunday's episode – were to blame for the nerve gas accusations.

We may not know where the true blame lies for Atlantis World Media's latest scandal, but the mistakes made along the way are what make this show worth watching. "The Newsroom" is at its best when it lets its characters just do their jobs – or royally screw up while trying to do them.

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  • Corrected on 7/15/2013: A previous version of this article misquoted one of the characters of “The Newsroom.”