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Legal won’t authorize use of local security to find Khalid because he’s freelance. SuperDon’s gets a head of righteous steam going when Mackenzie suggests they talk to Reese. Since he hates Don the least Don takes the lead, storming into Reese’s office suite and ignoring his assistant so he can pretend to bust down a door, letting Will have a moment where he doesn’t feel quite so impotent this episode, either.
A couple of hours later and the whole newsroom is urgently calling anyone they can to find Khalid. Don’s getting unhinged. Will calls him into his office to
condescendcalm him down but Don feels guilty. He thinks Elliot’s attack was his fault. Will smarms some words of wisdom before letting Don know he didn’t give him an order he gave him permission then attempts replicating human decency by making a Gumby face. Resist, Don…RESIST!
Luckily, Elliot calls out that he’s found Khalid. He was taken by the Army (you don’t say) and now they’re pretending he was taken by a fringe group to extort money out of ACN. Will and Elliot discuss the logistics of the wire transfer then Will leaves Elliot and Don alone so they can have their manly bro scene and Don can apologize for being kind of a dick and Elliot can let it go. Brohugs!
While Will breaks down the Wisconsin protests, which won’t start until Monday, Jim lets Mackenzie know that Wade’s there to see her. She’ll meet him on the terrace. In 10 degree weather. She steps out and they have a brief argument about how she’s still in love with Will so Wade used her to advance his political ambitions and she can say, and I quote, “In this order: leave, lose the election, and go to hell.” That’s brilliant Sorkin dialogue right there.
Will’s at the only bar in midtown, Hang Chew’s, meeting with Nina. He thinks she’s targeting him because he rejected her and Nina’s all “get over yourself, Gumbyface.” She’s just following the stories that Mackenzie breached her professional ethics by booking her boyfriend on her show and is an incompetent EP. So she came armed with the truth.
Will blusters long enough so that Nina can be petty and venal and use some tortured analogy about opening a restaurant and $50K will make them both silent partners for life. As Will writes out the check Nina nonsensically says they’re “journalists” so Will can recontextualize that bunch of buffoons and unprofessional yahoos (and Don and Elliot and Sloan) as being noble, because THEY’RE journalists.
Then he pivots and tells her that she can come after him all she wants but to leave his staff alone or he’ll use his show for a personal vendetta to destroy her. How does that fit into their “only hard news” format? Immaterial, he’s on a roll and tells her if he so much as gets a whiff of Leona’s, the network’s owner mind you, involvement he’ll destroy both of them. Which gives Leona cause to fire him. But not in Sorkinland, where Nina stews while Will preens off, realizing he won’t need that Viagra tonight.