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Tara Ariano

S03.E05: Oh Shenandoah

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So this will probably just get buried by discussion of the rape plot, and rightfully so, but...are we supposed to infer from Lily's suicide that Don's journalism professor didn't get to run her version of the Equatorial Kundu story?

Edited by Bix
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Charlie was a jerk this episode. Even if he had reasonable motivations behind his decisions, the way in which he acted towards his staff seemed wrong (or at least out of character).

 

Jim/Maggie are so poorly written that it is cringeworthy to watch. I also kind of hate Jim, so I am disappointed to see him getting what he wants.

 

Will's battle with inner demons fell flat for me. Too many scenes, not enough impact, and too disjointed from the rest of the characters.

 

The rape storyline was ambitious and did its job revealing a Catch-22 situation. When I argue one side or the other, I just end up realizing that neither option is satisfactory.

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The rape storyline was ambitious and did its job revealing a Catch-22 situation. When I argue one side or the other, I just end up realizing that neither option is satisfactory.

 

That might be arguable if Don hadn't decided that he MORALLY had to believe the accused over her because...he also has a penis? Or something?

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Emily Nussbaum from "The New Yorker" has an interesting blog post about tonight's episode: 

http://www.newyorker.com/culture/culture-desk/the-newsroom-crazy-making-campus-rape-episode?int-cid=mod-latest. 

 

I really liked this part:

 

When I first watched the scene, I was most unnerved by the way their talk mashed everything together, suggesting that there were only two sides to the question—a bizarrely distorted premise. It’s possible, for instance, to believe (as I do) that a Web site posting anonymous accusations is a dangerous idea and to also think it’s fine for a woman to describe her own rape in public, to protest an administration that buries her accusation, and to go on cable television to discuss these issues. It’s possible to oppose a “live debate” between a rape victim and her alleged rapist and to believe that rape survivors can be public advocates.

 

I think that's the key thing here. I felt like the show was presenting an either/or that didn't really make sense. Of course, a televised debate between someone accused of raper and the person who accused him is a terrible idea! But instead of exploring how tv news could engage better with these issues, the show took the stance that there's no middle ground. Maybe Don could have a done a story about all those untested rape kits and investigated how the legal system deals with 'acquaintance rape'. To me, it felt like the show just threw up its hand and had Don be like 'ack, this is too complicated, I'm just going to kill this story.' (I feel like I'm not being as articulate as Ms. Nussbaum so I just super encourage people to read her take. 

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Emily Nussbaum from "The New Yorker" has an interesting blog post about tonight's episode:

http://www.newyorker.com/culture/culture-desk/the-newsroom-crazy-making-campus-rape-episode?int-cid=mod-latest.

I really liked this part:

I think that's the key thing here. I felt like the show was presenting an either/or that didn't really make sense. Of course, a televised debate between someone accused of raper and the person who accused him is a terrible idea! But instead of exploring how tv news could engage better with these issues, the show took the stance that there's no middle ground. Maybe Don could have a done a story about all those untested rape kits and investigated how the legal system deals with 'acquaintance rape'. To me, it felt like the show just threw up its hand and had Don be like 'ack, this is too complicated, I'm just going to kill this story.' (I feel like I'm not being as articulate as Ms. Nussbaum so I just super encourage people to read her take.

I absolutely agree that those would have been great stories. But Don didn't have a choice. He'd been told to do the story the way Pruitt wanted or he'd be fired. He lied to Charlie to keep his job, and he told Mary (was that her name?) that he hoped she wouldn't do the show because he hated the presentation. That's it. Pitching a different story wasn't an option. The show didn't take a stance that there was no middle ground. Pruitt did, and through that characterization, the show took the same stance it has from the beginning: We don't do good TV; we do the news. Edited by madam magpie
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I thought Don was exactly right. I agree with him 100%.

And you said this was good for feminism. So Don was handcuffed. That's caving in journalism. The woman wanted to have her say. He didn't like the grounds for her to have her say. So he shut it down. The woman didn't get a voice in the matter.

Bless her heart, even though it was her own story, Don knew better. Don even knew he didn't need to get her input. She ultimately got no say in whether her story was told.

Edited by pennben
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Nope, you are the one drawing lines of who is deserving of support and who is not; you laid down that marker. I'm willing to stand behind even those that don't carry their mattresses...and yes, I am ready to stand by the mattress carrier.

Do you think that these types of protests don't happen on college campuses? Because they do. And all I had to do was look out my window this past weekend and see the many inventive and provocative kinds of protests re: Eric Garner and Michael Brown to confirm it. And yes, the news reported these marches.

And you said this was good for feminism. So Don was handcuffed. That's caving in journalism. The woman wanted to have her say. He didn't like the grounds for her to have her say. So he shut it down. The woman didn't get a voice in the matter.

Bless her heart, even though it was her own story, Don knew better. Don even knew he didn't need to get her input. She ultimately got no say in whether her story was told.

What if Don was a female producer? Would you feel differently?

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I absolutely know these protests occur. I applaud all that take up the causes. My point was that folks deserve support even if they aren't a cause.

I am sorry if anything I said led you to a different conclusion

ETA: As for your question about if Don was a woman. Nope, I'd have the same thought: the victim deserved a voice in the decision.

Edited by pennben
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Only 2% of rape accusations are false, but the issue receives a disproportionate amount of attention (as evidenced by this discussion).  When it comes to light that an alleged rape was fabricated, this promotes skepticism of rape accusations in general (including the 98% that aren't false).

 

So even if we assume that a website like the one described in the episode wouldn't entice women to lie about being raped – and even if we decide that giving forty-nine rape victims a forum in which to publicly identify their attackers justifies turning one innocent person's life upside-down – we mustn't ignore the negative impact that those 2% of accusers have on the other 98%.

 

In that respect, the problem is self-perpetuating.  Today's 98% might be helped, but this comes at the expense of tomorrow's 98% (some of whom will be unfairly lumped together with today's 2%).

Edited by Rowsdower

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I absolutely agree that those would have been great stories. But Don didn't have a choice. He'd been told to do the story the way Pruitt wanted or he'd be fired. He lied to Charlie to keep his job, and he told Mary (was that her name?) that he hoped she wouldn't do the show because he hated the presentation. That's it. Pitching a different story wasn't an option. The show didn't take a stance that there was no middle ground. Pruitt did, and through that characterization, the show took the same stance it has from the beginning: We don't do good TV; we do the news.

 

You've put across lots of arguments that I agree with but this is the one that deserves to be highlighted. Of course there's legitimate debates about rape and reporting of it, but the essential point is that this story was just the latest iteration of the Don and Mac arc as exec producers: how to produce a news show when you are essentially being railroaded by your boss to go against your instincts. Everything else that riles everyone up should be within the confines of what Don found himself in. Don and his colleagues didn't think it was good idea to air a confrontation but Pruitt did. This show has consistently served up drama about the friction between the ACN newsroom and its owners. It just happens that this episode is about a rape story. 

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I don't think it "just happened to be about rape". I think Sorkin intentionally made it about rape. And he wanted to tell us how rape should be covered. And I think he is appalling, and yet he's going to mansplain to all women the best way to respond to rape.

Edited by pennben
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I absolutely know these protests occur. I applaud all that take up the causes. My point was that folks deserve support even if they aren't a cause.

ETA: As for your question about if Don was a woman. Nope, I'd have the same thought: the victim deserved a voice in the decision.

But aren't there better ways than a Gladiator-type televised debate to offer rape victims support and a voice? So many things need to be addressed and fixed, from the police, to college campus handling of rape accusations, to the court system, to the media. I think a free-for-all TV spectacle is a step in the wrong direction.

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I absolutely agree. What I don't agree with was Don taking the woman's choice away from her without telling her he took it away. He made the decision for her and never told her.

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I don't think it "just happened to be about rape". I think Sorkin intentionally made it about rape. And he wanted to tell us how rape should be covered. And I think he is appalling.

Seriously.  This wasn't a moment where Sorkin goes "Whoopsie!  Our Topical Theme of the Week just happens to be rape on college campuses!"  This shit is deliberate and entirely in the hands Sorkin and his staff.  And speaking of the writing staff, one of the (female) writers for the show spoke out about the episode.

 

But aren't there better ways than a Gladiator-type televised debate to offer rape victims support and a voice? So many things need to be addressed and fixed, from the police, to college campus handling of rape accusations, to the court system, to the media. I think a free-for-all TV spectacle is a step in the wrong direction.

Absolutely.  So the question is: why the fuck weren't these options?

 

Not only do we have Sorkin's Rich White Male Avatar of the week (Don) giving Sorkin's Opinions about this topic, he doesn't even respect the issue enough to avoid turning it into a false dichotomy where one of the options is "Don't talk about rape at all, go home" and the other is the Straw position where rape victims publicly expose their alleged attackers with impunity and one of them gets into a Jerry Springer-esque confrontation with her alleged rapist on national TV.  It's bullshit.

 

At least Don didn't scream "It's about Ethics in Reporting Rape Allegations!"

Edited by Mars477
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The story was about Don, look at Thomas Sadoski's choices as an actor in those scenes. There was a seriousness there that meant the character was not demeaning the subject. Don was totally sympathetic to Mary, he really didn't have to find her - he could've lied, like he eventually did anyway - but he meant to find her and give her account the respect it deserves, whilst also giving his own instincts as a producer the same respect. To conclude that Don wasn't conflicted and that by implication Sorkin didn't respect the issue is to under value the work that into it, imo. There was a lot of nuance there that this debate is not acknowledging.

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So, the story about the woman that was raped was really just a story about Don? Yep, I can see that. Very Sorkin.

Edited by pennben
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So, the story about the woman that was raped was really just a story about Don? Yep, I can see that. Very Sorkin.

 

Actually, yeah. It sounds harsh but the show is about news journalists and how they react to the shows they cover, or how they cover the news. Just like how E.R. was about the doctors, rather than the various patients. 

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So, the story about the woman that was raped was really just a story about Don? Yep, I can see that. Very Sorkin.

Boom.

Sorkin's mouthpiece shows more concern about the alleged rapist than the victim, and explicitly says that he must believe the alleged rapist over the victim (implying that he assumes rape victims are lying about being raped). It's pretty horrifying.

And all of this is a minor stopping point in Sorkin's Ode to Serious Journalism (which... Don't make me laugh...)

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Boom.

Sorkin's mouthpiece shows more concern about the alleged rapist than the victim, and explicitly says that he must believe the alleged rapist over the victim (implying that he assumes rape victims are lying about being raped). It's pretty horrifying.

 

He didn't though, did he? He specifically said he found Mary credible and with no reason to lie and found the boy despicable, in not so many words. He also didn't imply that rape victims lie, only that certain platforms give liars a chance to ruin other people's lives. As a news show producer, he didn't want his show to be one of those platforms, even though he acknowledged that Mary herself wasn't a liar. I think he showed a great deal of concern to the victim, he asked her all the right questions but at the end of the day, he couldn't really offer her a solution. What was horrifying was the reaction of the police and campus security, Don's reaction should be so low down that list.

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The story was about Don, look at Thomas Sadoski's choices as an actor in those scenes. There was a seriousness there that meant the character was not demeaning the subject. Don was totally sympathetic to Mary, he really didn't have to find her - he could've lied, like he eventually did anyway - but he meant to find her and give her account the respect it deserves, whilst also giving his own instincts as a producer the same respect. To conclude that Don wasn't conflicted and that by implication Sorkin didn't respect the issue is to under value the work that into it, imo. There was a lot of nuance there that this debate is not acknowledging.

I don't think anyone is arguing Don is some sort of unfeeling monster. Of course he's portrayed as sympathetic to the victim. But in order to bolster his own choice not to do the story, he seeks out the anonymous victim, disrupts her life, dangles the prospect of telling her side of the story, without any intention of actually allowing her to do so, even saying he doesn't want her to do it. He lectures her about "innocence before guilt", that he is morally obligated to believe her accused rapist (why? He's not a judge or on a jury. He's a reporter. What a ridiculous bias it would be to hold such arbitrary beliefs about his potential stories based on legalities that have nothing to do with private citizens. I could have stomached an "I don't know who is telling the truth" over, "morally I have to believe the sketchy guy."), the danger her website could pose, and finally, condescendingly explaining that going on ACN would make her a target for slut shaming.

There's a reason these scenes upset a lot of people. And it's not because Don's twirling a mustache. It's because he's a colossal self-serving, self righteous prick with tears of compassion in his eyes as he tries to manipulate a victim into making a choice he doesn't have the balls himself to make.

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Guess what? That's not your job, Aaron Sorkin. It's the job of the legal system -- to presume innocence -- but it certainly doesn't apply to private citizens!

 

Sorkin really should have had a character in the episode argue that point.

 

Oh, wait.  He did.  (And believe it or not, the person to whom that character spoke was another character – not Aaron Sorkin.)

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So, the story about the woman that was raped was really just a story about Don? Yep, I can see that. Very Sorkin.

No, it was not about Don. It was about the story.. The victim, the accused, how to tell it, where to tell it, is it right to tell it, etc... Don, as a producer, was just one part of the process.

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This show is so maudlin and corny.  I can't.

 

Just a few of the things that bugged me... the corny ass conversation Will was having with his 'cellmate'... Maggie learning Russian in a 7 hr flight enough to be fluent to converse... .

Actually, Maggie's Russian struck me as realistic. I don't claim to speak to speak Russian, but I did understand what she was saying because I quickly learned the same kind of phrases for a trip to Moscow many years ago. She wasn't conversing as such, she was saying "excuse me, do you speak English?" Easy phrase to learn phonetically. Pahzahlsta vwee gavareetye pa angliski. The airline clerk said something to her back about Maggie's ability to speak Russian (I didn't understand the sentence structure but it had the same verbs and subjects as another phrase I memorized "excuse me, I don't speak much Russian") before she switched to English.

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even though a look at the grounds on which her account is being disputed are pretty absurd.  ("...no ritualized sexual assault is part of our pledging or initiating process,' the fraternity said." OH, WORD?!)

 

With due respect, I don't think that's correct.  My understanding is the guy she named to her friends as her rapist has no connection to the fraternity she named, and said that he had never even met her.  The fraternity said there was no party on the night she alleges the party occurred.  Her friend, who presumably would be supportive of her, denied seeing her in a bloody dress or seeing any injuries, denied having a debate regarding the social price of her reporting rape and stated they offered to get her help, which she refused.  Those seem like pretty significant areas of dispute.   

 

I think the episode had real problems.  Jim and Maggie's plotline felt like it was happening on some other planet, given the tone of the main story.  I also can't think of any worse idea that doing a Point/Counterpoint-style debate with an alleged rapist and his alleged victim. 

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Sorkin really should have had a character in the episode argue that point.

 

Oh, wait.  He did.  (And believe it or not, the person to whom that character spoke was another character – not Aaron Sorkin.)

 

Was this Don? If so, this is my objection:

 

He lectures her about "innocence before guilt", that he is morally obligated to believe her accused rapist (why? He's not a judge or on a jury. He's a reporter. What a ridiculous bias it would be to hold such arbitrary beliefs about his potential stories based on legalities that have nothing to do with private citizens. I could have stomached an "I don't know who is telling the truth" over, "morally I have to believe the sketchy guy."),

 

That goes beyond news -- that speaks to Don's personal opinions as a private citizen. That part of the debate could've come out of the MRA handbook: "But think of the men!" If the debate had been kept to the news -- basically "I don't want to do the story because of the news value," I might've been able to stomach it more. But "I believe the sketchy guy, because what if he can't get into medical school, because of some crazy bitches' Web site!" was completely unnecessary, in my opinion. Just say you don't want to put her on the news -- don't annoint oneself an arbiter for truth and justice when one holds no such title (Don is not a prosecutor, nor is he serving on a jury) and don't mention the innocent, wronged men that might be hurt because of the evil Web site. That was what put the scene over the line, to me.

 

And as I mentioned, I actually don't believe Don holds those opinions, so I resent him being tagged to make the mansplaining speech that would've sounded natural coming out of Jim's "never met a woman whose choices I cannot question in a tone of moral superiority" mouth. Then it would've at least made sense.

Edited by Eolivet
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What I don't understand is why anyone who could leave stayed on with Pruitt. Don, Sloan, Mac, Jim...they could get jobs anywhere and they have plenty of money. Why not just quit? Maybe they have contracts that don't allow it? But it seems to me that in an acquisition, the contracts would be up for renegotiation.

Because it was not the last episode and Charlie was still alive

 

 

I have also thought that maybe Will never knew the source.

He knew. He was being consistent with his character. And he was under oath when he said he knew the source to the Grand Jury

 

About the rape case: I think Sorkin almost got it right by showing that a rape victim can do everything right, try all the venues to get the rapists charged, and still be denied justice. She can be blamed for everything that happened and be ignored. She admitted to being drunk and having used drugs, but she was raped and she did not consent to that, so the assumption of the police, college campus police and almost everybody else is that she "asked" for it. 

Then she decides to go public.

I think Sorkin got it right when Don pointed out that she would be slut shamed because she was speaking up. He should have stopped there. Those are very real points and matches reality.

But then he made Don the "balanced", where the balanced is tilted in favor of the rapist already. Why would Don be concerned about the future jobs a rapist would get? 

Sorkin misses the point when his message is that "if you did not get the justice through the usual ways, accept it. Your life is ruined, don't make other lives bad". Only the the other lives are the rapists' lives and they should have a very hard time 

If she was willing to go on TV, that should be her choice. If he did not want her there, he should not have gone to see her.

I don't think TV is the place to go for this. I think not being silent is a great way to go about this cases. Protests and rapist shaming. I just don't trust TV (or media) people. But it should be the person's choice.

Now, as I like Don, I want him to be good. I wanted him to have simply told Charlie that he did not find the girl and that's it. He was against it from the beginning but in the end it felt like he wanted to protect the victim, who did not want protection, she wanted to scream. 

Being a victim of sexual assault myself, I can tell you that only the act itself is worse then the silencing imposed on us when we try to talk about what really happened. 

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Well... I did enjoy watching Sloan take down Bree.  Even if it was an easy victory and they managed to make Bree as smug and easy to hate as possible, in the short time they had.  Oh, and that the whole incident was what help set off Charlie's fatal heart attack.  Whoops!

 

Agreed.  Sloane is the best thing about this season, I swear.  Charlie's heart attack was telegraphed the whole episode.  I can't recall a moment where he wasn't wild eyed and yelling.  

 

The low point of the episode for me was Jim and Maggie.  Honestly, I don't care at all about them as a couple and barely am interesting in the each of them on their own.  I know it's supposed to be the awesome love story arc that crosses seasons, but it's dull and predictable.   It also bothers me that six of the characters who are supposed to be co-workers have all paired off into three couples.  That's a pretty high employee to schutpping pair ratio for any office. A little too romance novel-ish.

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are we supposed to infer from Lily's suicide that Don's journalism professor didn't get to run her version of the Equatorial Kundu story?

 

Now THAT's a good question.  If the story was NOT reported it seems to me that Lily would have done exactly what she threatened and dumped the data on the internet.  But Mac threatened to out her if she did that.  Or was that threat only if she didn't wait for the ACN story?  Do we think the professor reported the story and no one cared?  Could that have driven Lily to suicide in her despair at the callousness and indifference of America to deaths caused by America overseas?  I don't think I buy that.  Do we think the Justice department figured out who the leak was without Will's help, was closing in on her, and so she killed herself?  Or do we think the CIA executed her?  I don't know and worse yet, I don't think I care.  The Kundu story got completely lost in this last episode (in the same way it has gotten completely lost on these discussion boards.)  It's a shame.  The previous episode was so good.  I'm pretty sure Lily killed herself just to give Will a way to get out of jail without revealing his source.  She was a victim of plot necessity.  Which is lazy writing.

 

As for Charlie being so out of character I chalked that up to what he said about him being the only one who could fire anyone (Leona's parting gift to him.)  I took it to mean that so long as Charlie appeared to be complying with Pruitt's orders he could not be fired for cause (he has a contract so there has to be cause) and as long as he held on his his job he could protect everyone else's jobs.  So he was eating crow and implementing Pruitt's "improvements" while desperately trying to continue to do good journalism in the context of this new normal. He hated doing it but he loved his staff so he was trying to find a path through the minefield.  It was killing him to do it.  It finally did kill him.

Edited by WatchrTina
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There is another reason the news isn't the place to air out claims of rape- defamation, libel & slander suits. Rolling Stone might be learning this the hard way very soon. Even in last nights episode, we as the audience and Don as the producer still don't know what really happened to that girl. That might make some uncomfortable but it is a fact.

I'd add one more point- doesn't Mary still have her website to bring her story and the larger issue to the forefront?

Edited by HollaMcDollar
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About the rape case: I think Sorkin almost got it right by showing that a rape victim can do everything right, try all the venues to get the rapists charged, and still be denied justice. She can be blamed for everything that happened and be ignored. She admitted to being drunk and having used drugs, but she was raped and she did not consent to that, so the assumption of the police, college campus police and almost everybody else is that she "asked" for it. 

Then she decides to go public.

I think Sorkin got it right when Don pointed out that she would be slut shamed because she was speaking up. He should have stopped there. Those are very real points and matches reality.

But then he made Don the "balanced", where the balanced is tilted in favor of the rapist already. Why would Don be concerned about the future jobs a rapist would get? 

Sorkin misses the point when his message is that "if you did not get the justice through the usual ways, accept it. Your life is ruined, don't make other lives bad". Only the the other lives are the rapists' lives and they should have a very hard time

If she was willing to go on TV, that should be her choice. If he did not want her there, he should not have gone to see her.

I don't think TV is the place to go for this. I think not being silent is a great way to go about this cases. Protests and rapist shaming. I just don't trust TV (or media) people. But it should be the person's choice.

Now, as I like Don, I want him to be good. I wanted him to have simply told Charlie that he did not find the girl and that's it. He was against it from the beginning but in the end it felt like he wanted to protect the victim, who did not want protection, she wanted to scream. 

Being a victim of sexual assault myself, I can tell you that only the act itself is worse then the silencing imposed on us when we try to talk about what really happened. 

 

Thank you for your point of view on this -- I appreciate you being able to share and while it's hollow from a stranger on the Internet, I am so sorry about what happened to you.

 

I agree with your post so much, and you actually put it better than I could. If you want to make an argument based within the realities of society, argue that society will inevitably judge the victim. But to attack the Web site and defend all the men who might be hurt by the Web site was out of line, and had no place in the argument.

 

I bolded your statement because that's exactly where I believe the story went wrong. The fact that it became "Let's think about the men in this situation" only made it worse.

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Why was Shenandoah the song associated with Charlie's death?  I was thinking through the lyrics, basically a person who has migrated West and is homesick, and couldn't really make the connection.  Beautiful version of the song, though.

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I'm pretty sure Lily killed herself just to give Will a way to get out of jail without revealing his source.

That's actually the one thing I disliked about last night's episode. I thought this was convenient and a bit of a cop-out, like Sorkin wrote himself into a bit of a corner and didn't know how to get out. Really, the govt just should have relented for the reasons Lesenthal gave: arresting Will was supposed to be coercive, not punitive, and that wasn't working. The govt doesn't actually want to lock up random people for no reason, and I do think they'd have cracked first.

That said, though, I wonder too if the story was reported. At first, I thought it was and that Lily lost it being under so much pressure, but now that you all have brought this up, I'm not so sure.

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I'd add one more point- doesn't Mary still have her website to bring her story and the larger issue to the forefront?

 

Agreed. Don never told her to close the website. #uracn will likely integrate the content.

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I absolutely agree that those would have been great stories. But Don didn't have a choice. He'd been told to do the story the way Pruitt wanted or he'd be fired.

 

Because Sorkin wrote the story that way.  Nussbaum's point was that he didn't have to.  He chose to.

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That said, though, I wonder too if the story was reported. At first, I thought it was and that Lily lost it being under so much pressure, but now that you all have brought this up, I'm not so sure.

 

Did the AP never run the story (after 52 days) after all those boxes were delivered to the reporter at the end of last episode ?

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Because Sorkin wrote the story that way.  Nussbaum's point was that he didn't have to.  He chose to.

Oh, sure. Definitely. I guess I just don't see why a writer should be required to write to someone else's agenda to not be considered pro-rapist. If this was the story Sorkin wanted to tell, the story of vigilantism and justice and how that affects the news and reporters, so be it. He's not dumb; I expect he knew one side would be out with pitchforks. That's all OK. My point is just that within the story, Don the character didn't have much of a choice.

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That's actually the one thing I disliked about last night's episode. I thought this was convenient and a bit of a cop-out, like Sorkin wrote himself into a bit of a corner and didn't know how to get out. Really, the govt just should have relented for the reasons Lesenthal gave: arresting Will was supposed to be coercive, not punitive, and that wasn't working. The govt doesn't actually want to lock up random people for no reason, and I do think they'd have cracked first.

That said, though, I wonder too if the story was reported. At first, I thought it was and that Lily lost it being under so much pressure, but now that you all have brought this up, I'm not so sure.

Didn't you find it a bit ridiculous that the government couldn't figure out who the leaker was in almost two months- or until she shot herself and the friend turned over the info?

_____________________________________________________________________________________

Having read a few more reviews of this episode and noticing that most just turn into personal venting session rather than reviews of the episode, I have one more point to bring up about the rape issue and then I think I'm done....

I didn't see this as Sorkin "mansplaining or rapesplaining" (two fake words I absolutely hate); I saw this as him presenting various sides of this issue and forcing people to actually think about it as a very difficult issue, along w/ the very serious consequences of taking certain actions (that includes both men putting themselves in situations where consent might be questionable & the costs to those wrongly accused of rape, even if it's only 2% (although I don't know where that number came from)). What's lost in much of the collectivist groupthink in many reviews is the actual conversation talking place in the various comment sections- and for that reason, I view this episode as a success.

Edited by HollaMcDollar
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Oh no! Robert Guillaume had a stroke!

 

Oh wait... wrong show.

 

Oh no! Martin Sheen had an MS attack!

 

Whoops again.

 

Ah, Jack McCoy finally had his head explode from the stupid. Ok, now I'm on the right show.

 

When whatshername told Will Charlie was dead, I laughed. I laughed a lot. I laughed harder at that than anything on tv in weeks.  I should have been sad because he was probably my favorite character and I love Sam WatersTOWN, but it was so heavy handed and full of rehashed Sorkin that I just lost it.

 

It's bad enough that he went there again (still miss you, Mrs Landingham and Admiral Fitzwallace), but it was written so badly, then the slow mo reactions to the FEELINGS MUSIC and I can't.  If there were more than one episode left I'd be done. I can hate watch one more hour.

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He knew. He was being consistent with his character. And he was under oath when he said he knew the source to the Grand Jury

 

He was and was answering honestly, but he was still holding an ace up his sleeve, which as a lawyer and former prosecutor himself he knew.  Unlike Mac, he had no direct knowledge of the identity of the source.  He hadn't spoken with her.  If he knew anything, he knew what Neil told him.  Marcia Gay Perry Mason, in the real world, would have uncovered this and pointed out that nothing in Will's knowledge of the source was admissible in court (hearsay) - not against Lilly certainly, and probably not against Neil.

That said, though, I wonder too if the story was reported. At first, I thought it was and that Lily lost it being under so much pressure, but now that you all have brought this up, I'm not so sure.

 

I don't think Lily was under pressure - nobody but Mac recognized her name.

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I intended to watch but  I always read reviews first. I don't watch it live and I don't care about spoilers.

 

I get why people like Sloan, I really do. She is the textbook strong female character. Highly educated, high profile work she is very good at, witty and a no nonsense woman. Who wouldn't like that? She just doesn't do anything for me, none of the regulars do so she is not alone. They are all cookie cutter characters, Sloan happens to be one that is more palatable. The reason why I don't go gaga over her is, her opponents, whom she gets to react to and be so awesomesauce, are often one note villains. I would have been okay if Sloan slapped Perry across the face when she went to confront him about the App. That is how obnoxious he was. Sloan was positioned to win this argument from the get go. Sorkin wasn't fairly presenting both sides to an argument. Besides being a major jerk, Perry couldn't offer a proper defense of his App, he was more interested in scoring a phone number with a hot woman. I can't clap in glee for the winner given unevenness in the match. I mean she snarked in his face and he couldn't come up with a single defense on air.  

 

Charlie's reaction made sense to me, humiliating one of their own when they are treading water is a bad idea no matter what. Upon watching Sorkin's post show interview though, Charlie was having a hard dealing with what he has become, what he has to do. I guess he too would hav thought the interview okay if he wasn't been made to act otherwise. According to AS, that is why he had a heart attack and gave up for the ghost. These guys are extremely classist who would not give an inch. Not all celebrity news is trash. The narrative, which they control make all the difference. When Charlie asked to include Gaga, instead of arguing, Mac should have found a way to include it in a way that is suitable for what ACN represent. Given how much disdain with which fluff pieces are treated and who represent them, I am sure I am to side with the Sloan, Mac, Jim etc.

 

There was nuance in the rape story. It wasn't black and white, but that doesn't mean it wasn't offensive. Others have mentioned instances where it derailed. To me, it was going fine until Don brought up Sloan's ex. The two situations so vastly differ, I couldn't figure out why he'd bring it up. Women telling their rape stories online is not the same as an ex vindictively posting naked photos. He went to see Mary under false pretense. He was on his guard, from the moment he knocked on her door . He is full of shit for saying he believes her, but wait! He is morally obligated to believe the shifty guy. No Don, you don't. If you did, you wouldn't lie your way into her life and out making promises you know you were not going to keep. 

 

I was dreading Maggie and Jim and I was right. I would have FF if On Demand let me.

Edited by Deputy Deputy CoS
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Did the AP never run the story (after 52 days) after all those boxes were delivered to the reporter at the end of last episode ?

I was asking myself the same question

 

The same way I am asking myself what happened to Will's death threats (do we know?) and if we will ever find out what happened to that asshole, Dantana, and the lawsuits

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I intended to watch but  I always read reviews first. I don't watch it live and I don't care about spoilers.

 

...

There was nuance in the rape story. It wasn't black and white, but that doesn't mean it wasn't offensive. Others have mentioned instances where it derailed. To me, it was going fine until Don brought up Sloan's ex. The two situations so vastly differ, I couldn't figure out why he'd bring it up. Women telling their rape stories online is not the same as an ex vindictively posting naked photos....

I was dreading Maggie and Jim and I was right. I would have FF if On Demand let me.

First- if you have HBO OnDemand you should also have HBOGO- and HBoGO allows fast forwarding.... You'll have to watch on comp or iPad- unless you have appleTV or other service w/ HBO GO app plunged into your TV

I thought the comparion was sufficiently analogous, so long as the rape allegation is false and done out of revenge- which is the point Don was making to the girl. He wasn't saying posting all non-prosecutable rape claims was leaking nudes; he was saying posting untrue rape claims and posting nudes of an ex are both revenge based acts meant to hurt an innocent person.

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Is the average income of a family of four in the United States really around $30 000? That is a bit low, is it not? As someone with advance degree in economics who follows economic activities rigorously, that is one point that Sloan can not be wrong about.

 

However, Wikipedia gives $51 939 as median household income, not mentioning the size of the household and not mentioning anything about average.

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Is the average income of a family of four in the United States really around $30 000? That is a bit low, is it not? As someone with advance degree in economics who follows economic activities rigorously, that is one point that Sloan can not be wrong about.

 

However, Wikipedia gives $51 939 as median household income, not mentioning the size of the household and not mentioning anything about average.

I think that seems a little low maybe; the poverty level for a family of four is around $23k, IIRC. I think the more accurate figure for a true average would be something around $36-$40k... but that is just my guess from reading various articles on the issue over the past few years.

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Something vital to consider in regards to the rape storyline--people didn't need the woman's website to allege anonymous rape allegations. Her website wasn't the only forum for people to post anonymously on the internet, it was just an aggregator for a certain type of anonymous post. Getting rid of her website wouldn't stop 2% of people from making false allegations, it would just make it more difficult for the 98% of people with real allegations to make their voices heard.

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When Sloan was interviewing Bree, she said that his income of $55 000 p.a. was "almost twice the national average for family of four". Guess that number was not vetted at HBO, was it?

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Here is what the Google says:

As a result, the mean tends to be higher than the median income, with the top earning households boosting it. Overall, the mean household income in the United States, according to the US Census Bureau 2004 Economic Survey, was $60,528, or $17,210 (39.73%) higher than the median household income.

So, either way, it seems Sloan was a little off.....

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