Attention liberal-leaning HBO subscribers: The Newsroom
is coming back for a third season, but it will also be the show's last.
HBO president of programming Michael Lombardo made the announcement Monday, saying the Emmy-winning Aaron Sorkin drama about life in a cable television newsroom and the people who work there would begin production on its third and final season this spring. The series is slated to return in the fall, though a premiere date has not been set.
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"The Newsroom is classic Aaron Sorkin -- smart, riveting and thought-provoking," Lombardo said. "I'm sure this farewell season will be one to remember."
It's not entirely shocking that The Newsroom won't make it to a fourth season after it gave up a good bit of the momentum it had previously built up during the second go-around. The praise and promise of the inaugural season, which earned Jeff Daniels an Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series for his portrayal of anchor Will McAvoy, waned a bit during a more-structured season 2.
The main plot point -- a erroneous ACN exclusive about Operation Genoa, during which the US military allegedly dropped Sarin gas on civilians -- and the lawsuit that followed the doctored story were a bit unbelievable (and this comes from someone who has worked in an actual newsroom), as was the support the guilty party ended up receiving from executives Jane Fonda and her son.
Also, the hindsight look at real-life events leaves a ton of room for criticism. For example, it's very easy for ACN to be the only news organization that holds off on reporting that Congresswoman Gabby Giffords has died after the tragic shooting in Tucson (and subsequently are the only ones who don't report incorrect information). Likewise, you have to wonder if the 2012 presidential election would've been the backdrop had the results been different and Mitt Romney was in the White House.
While it is incredibly intelligent and well-written, Sorkin never really tries to hide the fact that the show is a liberal wet dream, the glorification of the last moderate idealistic "Republican." There were rumors that Sorkin wasn't returning anyway due to other projects, but this decision allows him to focus on the final season and make sure the series goes out on his terms. Otherwise, it's at risk to grow stale.
One thing is for sure, Olivia Munn is a scene-stealing beast who solidified her chops as an actor. She is a joy to watch.
Created by showrunner Sorkin (Oscar winner for writing The Social Network, executive producer and creator of the multiple Emmy winner The West Wing, The Newsroom follows the members of a cable news team on their quixotic mission to do the news well in the face of a fickle audience, corporate mandates and tangled personal relationships. Sorkin, Scott Rudin and Alan Poul return as executive producers, with Paul Lieberstein (The Office) joining the show as an executive producer.
Returning cast regulars include Daniels, Emily Mortimer, Sam Waterston, John Gallagher, Munn, Alison Pill, Thomas Sadoski and Dev Patel.
The Newsroom Season 3 will premiere fall 2014 on HBO.
(Image courtesy of HBO)