Knowing the only people at ACN with fully functioning brains are all on that plane, Don tells Mackenzie they got confirmation from CENTCOM. Because it’s not like she has a staff of about 10 associate producers. Whatever, Will’s managed to sober up in three minutes so he and Mackenzie beeline to Charlie while Jim gets “second confirmation” by reading a NYT liveblog from Helene Cooper. Yes, yes…lifting a story from another news source without independent confirmation. The hallmark of every great journalist. Mackenzie calls for Maggie (Why? She’s the most junior associate producer on staff.) and they charge into the meeting room to get Charlie’s okay.
Mackenzie’s all proud of herself like she just made him macaroni art and lets Charlie know their two sources are Chris Hawken at CENTCOM and Helene Cooper at the Times. Charlie surveys the band of idiots before him and validates their work by saying “We got him,” then has to point out that Helene Cooper is, in fact, not confirmation. She’s a reporter not a source. Mackenzie hilariously says “She’s solid” and so was Judith Miller once upon a time.
Is there any way we can bust Don, Elliot and Sloan out of that plane?
Then Charlie has to explain to three seasoned journalists, and a strident halfwit named Maggie, why you don’t report embargoed news, especially if it hasn’t been confirmed and it’s a matter of national security. See, actual lives are at risk when these missions are undertaken. People could still be behind enemy lines, they could have been taken prisoner, we could have been at war with Pakistan. And that’s why you need two confirmed sources instead of reading someone’s blog. Oh, but it’s also a character building moment as Charlie lets us know how he fucked up during the first Gulf War and gave away sensitive information to the Iraqis. Why? Why can’t he just have the ethics and common sense to know that when it’s a matter of national security journalists will never know the whole story.
The idiots all agree, except for Will because he’s become conveniently high again, but Mackenzie thinks it’s important to let the rest of the staff know and we have now entered the pompous and maudlin phase of the episode. Although it is blessedly Coldplay free, so I am grateful for the small mercies.
Instead, Charlie takes to the newsroom floor and delivers a pastiche of the St. Crispin Day’s speech, reminding them that they few, they happy few, the band of dumbasses who didn’t follow Don to 10 o’clock should remember to take a few seconds to note where they were when Will threw it to President Obama to announce that we killed bin Laden.
Everyone cheers…except for Kaley? She gets somber and disappears to the terrace and now I see why she’s there. See, she’s the proxy for all the families of victims to let us know that it wasn’t the panacea the rest of us thought it was. This would all be very sad and meaningful…if we had the slightest emotional investment in this character. But really, it was also a way to remind us that Jim and Neal are great guys, so yay?
Aw, I’m sorry…whatever your name is.
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