This week’s episode of The Morning Show is, in many ways, an inaccurate statement about Covid-19 and a microcosm for the chaos to come. “It’s Just Like The Flu” spends almost the entire episode having Bradley and Alex argue over who sabotaged the other the most. Well, that may not seem the most constructive use of an hour, it is entertaining. The most important thing about the episode is that they do not come to a conclusion about who’s to blame for the other’s failure. This shows that they have a lot of growing to do and that we will watch that occur throughout the season.
The other main story is that of Mitch Kessler. He has moved permanently to Italy away from any of the United States media. While he is there, he meets a feisty Italian woman who defends his character despite his horrible actions. The other giant bomb that the network is dealing with is being sued for the wrongful death of Hannah. Meanwhile, Alex is still dealing with her broken family dynamic and trying to figure out her place in the organization she gave so much of her life to. The whole episode plays out like the trials of a working woman, which is noble, but it’s framed in a disgustingly dry way.
The standouts of this episode are, of course, Aniston and Witherspoon. Even though their acting is on point, They still seem very fractured as scene partners. When they’re working together for a specific cause, the whole show feels like it makes sense, but when they are at each other’s throats, it just feels like their children. Honestly, audiences don’t want to see grown women with professional lives bicker and fight with each other continuously unless it’s on a reality show. Even then, it gets boring. The way to strengthen these characters is to give them some form of agency where they have control of their professional situation the way they want it. I want to see stronger versions of successful women in television, and I don’t necessarily care what form that takes. Having said that, whatever success is achieved needs to be without conflict. I don’t know if this show can do that.
Steve Carrell still manages to give some level of pathos to what would be an otherwise despicable character. I will never feel bad for Mitch Kessler, knowing what he did at the network. However, I like that the show is brave enough to give him a path toward redemption. I do not like the idea of the former CEO of the network showing up trying to convince Mitch to support him so that he doesn’t lose his golden severance package. I think Mitch is on a path away from the chaos, and to have that CEO show up at his door only reminds him of his failures. I like the show overall; I just need the characters to grow a lot faster.