The problems of The Morning Show season two are summed up perfectly in episode nine. There are lots of storylines, of varying significance, going on at the same time, but the way they have been woven together is very clumsy. It does not all quite fit into a cohesive whole.
‘The Morning Show’ Season Two Has a Lot Going on
In this episode, for instance, there is the ongoing fallout from Mitch’s death. Combined with that is an attempt at a discussion about cancel culture, (including Claire’s surprise return after bumping into Yanko,) and the never-ending saga of Maggie Brenner’s book. Then there’s Bradley’s relationship with both her brother, Hal, as well as her romantic interest in Laura. The writers and producers have then decided to throw Covid in on top of all that.
Alex has finally returned to New York and is getting ready to go back on air. Except now Bradley is off, taking her brother to rehab after his outburst – a mechanism that keeps Laura filling in for a bit longer. After a final sibling confrontation, we are left not knowing what has happened to Hal. All viewers have is a door knock and some returned cash while Bradley and Laura try and enjoy a romantic moment.
Alex Returns, But For How Long?
Alex tries to make right with those she has wronged, including Bradley and Laura. Indeed, she even attends Mitch’s memorial. This all has two consequences. Bradley is tough on Maggie during an interview, sticking up for Alex and how she has changed. However, this is undone by footage of Alex at the memorial being leaked, presumably by Fred, who it seemed was recording. This was a move so obvious that I thought the writers would resist it. Alas, no.
Ultimately, Alex’s fear of being canceled appears to be coming true.
Covid Takes Hold of The Morning Show Season Two
In her early morning panic, Alex trips and falls, ending up unconscious and in hospital. Where she tests positive for Covid. Having been around her colleagues and Mitch’s family.
We’d had a sprinkling of the pandemic both in earlier episodes, including Daniel in China, and we start seeing masks and talk of remote work in this episode. There is also a really well-executed scene in which Bradley and Laura talk about hand-washing. The cringe factor here highlights so much of our naivety at the start of the pandemic. But it’s Alex’s presence in an overrun hospital that brings it all home, and there is already a lot to handle.
Throughout The Morning Show season two, individual scenes, sequences, and even storylines have been good. The acting is often excellent. However, the overall final product is a mess.
[Update November 15 to include ‘Inside the Episode’ video]