'The Newsroom' Season 2 finale recap, 'Election Night Part 2'

  • Will McAvoy (played by Jeff Daniels) in the Season 2 finale of "The Newsroom."
Will McAvoy (played by Jeff Daniels) in the Season 2 finale of… (HBO )
September 16, 2013|By Ethan Renner | For The Baltimore Sun

"You're thoughtful and you're authentic and I have never seen you sneer at anyone or anything. There is, believe me, no one that you're not good enough for, and there is hardly anyone who's good enough for you, including, it turned out, me." -- Jim Harper

"The Newsroom" wrapped its second season with the thrilling conclusion to the Genoa storyline and gave us two new couples that we'll have the pleasure of watching engage in needlessly wordy banter going forward.

The episode opens in Don's office, where he, Mac, Charlie, Jim and Maggie argue over which bombshell story they should run. Should they air the Brody/Aiken story, which had the potential to sway the election, given that polls were still open in the West? Or the Petraeus story, which could earn their network back some credibility, particularly in reporting on military stories? They choose to run the Brody/Aiken story, as it serves to better inform the electorate, a goal that Will often stressed in Season One.

During a break in coverage at the anchor desk, Taylor asks for Will's blessing to try to hire Jim to work at a media consulting firm that she was planning to start. She tells Will that she is aware that senior staffers at News Night would be resigning, and she assumes that because of that, Jim will soon be out of a job. Will tries to convince her that only he and Charlie are going to be out of work, and that even that is no sure thing. More than anything, Will is upset that word has leaked that anyone is planning to resign. He tells the control room that all senior staffers need to meet him in the studio at once.

Will speaks to the assembled staffers and tells them that he wants all of them to keep their jobs -- that was the entire point of only him, Mac and Charlie offering to resign, after all. He tells them he doesn't want to hear of anyone else leaving their jobs. Don pipes up and tells Will that if he is resigning, everyone else is too. They will go down with the ship, they won't put their hands up and surrender, there will be no white flag above their door. Can you believe that it took me nine weeks to work in a Dido reference?

Meanwhile, upstairs at the big ACN viewing party, Charlie presses Leona to accept the resignations. Leona, who is in an altered state thanks to some champagne and herbal cigarettes, states that she plans to sue Charlie, Will and Mac for breach of contract if they walk. Charlie asks her to listen to Reese. Leona says that she is doing more than that, and that she is allowing Reese to make the final decision. What? So was Reese playing Charlie last week? Does he have a spine after all? We'll find out.

After meeting with Leona, Charlie bumps into Lisa, Maggie's roommate and Jim's old flame, who is working the party as a cocktail waitress. No, I mean, he actually bumps into her and sends her tray of drinks crashing to the floor. She asks him not to tell Jim that she is there.

Charlie sends Tess into the studio to deliver Will a note, telling him that their fate is in Reese's hands. Tess reminds me of any number of pretty girls that I would see wearing fedoras last year. Is that still a fashion thing? Pretty girls wearing fedoras? I never knew what to make of that, so I'm glad if we're done with it. Let me know.

Jim and Maggie field a call from the campaign of the Michigan congressman whose race they had mistakenly called in Part 1. They foolishly continue to stand by their lie, Jim more so than Maggie, and tell the campaign staffer that she should send her candidate out to make his victory speech. Then, Neal comes to Jim and tells him that someone at the viewing party managed to sneak a phone in, and is sending out sensitive information, including a photo of Charlie and Lisa together. Maggie tells Jim that maybe this is his chance to patch things up with Lisa, especially since none of them might have jobs the next day.

During a commercial, Mac tells Will to call the House for the Republicans when they came back from the break. Will leaves the studio and tells Elliot to make the call from Will's chair. He wants to start conditioning the audience for what he expects to be his departure. In the control room, Mac does the same, leaving Don to guide Elliot through the next segment.

Will and Mac take to the hair and makeup room to further iron out their differences, both professional and personal. Mac apologizes to Will for stuff. Will apologizes to Mac for stuff. Will then tells Mac that he hadn't actually intended to propose to her, a fact that is brand new to her and cuts her deeply. Elsewhere, Don tells Rebecca that he wants to countersue Jerry.

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