We’re halfway through The Morning Show’s second season, and it feels like the walls are closing around each of our main characters once again.
As of episode 5 titled “Ghosts,” the first half of the second season of the AppleTV+ newsroom drama has come and gone and there’s so much to talk about. For starters, the episode kicks off with Bradley returning from her rendezvous with Laura all smiles, as the audience is left to assume that all is well again with their relationship. Cory is actually outside Bradley’s door when she arrives home, and this interaction lays the groundwork for probably the most unfortunate thing Cory has ever done as a character.
I love Cory, personally, and I genuinely think Billy Crudup’s performance as Cory from season 1 should be his audition tape to play the Joker someday, but the current path he’s on has me extremely torn. On one hand, I love that he wants to protect Hannah, so much so that he visits her dad to beg him to take the settlement in his wrongful death suit, but on the other hand, I can’t imagine a positive outcome to betraying Bradley the way he’s about to: Leaking Bradley’s relationship with Laura to the press to bury the negative stories about Hannah.
Bradley doesn’t deserve to be outed this way, especially when we’ve all been shown just how far she is from truly accepting it herself. It’s not confirmed that Cory will truly out Bradley, but the title of episode 6, “A Private Person,” does seem to imply that Bradley will be forced to face her private life becoming public.
Speaking of betrayals, this episode was full of them for Jennifer Aniston’s Alex, who had a rough trip to Vegas. We learn that Alex was potentially the one who leaked to YDA that Laura was a lesbian many years ago, kickstarting the downfall of Laura’s career. Though, the episode implies that Alex might not even remember it as we see her “selective memory,” of how she treats others in her interactions with Chip, Audra, and finally, Maggie Brenner.
We also learn that Maggie will be including Alex and Mitch’s flings in her book about them, titled “The Wrong Side of the Bed,” and that’s the last straw for Alex as she pulls out of the debate and flies home. As happy as I’ve been to see Alex back on The Morning Show and taking such a proactive role, it’s hard to imagine her sticking with the show, especially after Maggie’s book drops. It seems that she’s already headed back to the mental state she was in at the end of season 1, and it’s downright depressing to watch after seeing such a changed Alex for these first four episodes.
Some moments that had me scratching my head weren’t exclusive to this episode, as they’d been brewing for a while, but “Ghosts,” feels like the last straw. Specifically for Mitch Kessler, my interest in him, and the amount of time, the show has dedicated to him so far.
In my mind, Mitch is irredeemable, and no amount of guilt-ridden confessions and time spent in Italy will change my mind about that. His admission to Paola about how he knew what he did to Hannah at the end of her life was wrong was refreshing to watch, but it’s not enough to make me forget the reason why her life ended in the first place.
Another low moment was everything to do with Yanko. I don’t know if I’m just misremembering his characterization during season 1, but did the writers just decide to suddenly make him their Republican insert this year?
His angry rant about Stella’s “progressive bullshit,” felt out of left field, and the storyline about him being “canceled,” is exhausting. He did redeem himself by defending Stella towards the end of the episode after she got called racist slurs on the street, but I’m sure the consequences of his actions will only make things worse for him going forward.
Overall, this episode of The Morning Show was really solid and served to round out the first half of a pretty decent season. Though the impending pandemic is still looming overhead, it’s still interesting to watch characters deal with the turmoil of what was, objectively, everyone’s least favorite year.