An excerpt from my pilot script review for The Morning Show which will be available 01/09/23:
2.) Plot Stability
Granted we don’t review a lot of scripts for TV projects, and I don’t claim to know every crucial detail to writing one, but one thing I do know…
Will it last?
You’re asking a producer and company to not only invest in a one-time project, but an entire season of smaller projects, and hopefully for all of you, beyond a single season.
Now, most of us know that streaming services have greatly reduced the number of episodes per season which definitely helps considering projects like Lost or The Walking Dead have twenty plus episode seasons, but there still needs to be an overall story arc that will keep audiences tuning in.
So did The Morning Show successfully demonstrate that with the pilot episode?
First off, I love the intro of Chip sitting on the floor waiting for a doomed call in the middle of the night.
That’s the kind of stuff that gets us interested right off the bat, and we’ll be reading (or watching) to see what has him so upset.
Then we go into the overall story that, I assume, will carry us through the rest of the season.
Co-host, Mitch, got fired for sexual harassment allegations.
This by itself wouldn’t be enough to keep me tuning in each week, but what’s interesting about it is the show’s co-anchor, Alex, now has to shoulder the entire thing by herself…but before they had to fire Mitch they were going to replace Alex because her ratings were dropping.
Oh, and she doesn’t know.
The potential for drama in this…drama comes from all the other characters having to tip-toe around that fact and make do with what they’ve got.
And then there’s Bradley…
Where the pilot script leaves off is when the head of the network news division, Cory, asks this “younger” version of Alex to have dinner and discuss her future.
Not having seen the show, but having seen the marketing, I assume Bradley joins the show as Alex’s new partner.
If done right, this should lead to good tension as the season rolls on, especially when Alex inevitably discovers they were going to replace her like Mitch said.
The one issue I had with the whole thing, and maybe it’s explored as the season progresses, but even with Mitch being a scumbag and openly admitting he cheated on his wife, if it was consensual, was it really a fireable offense?
People cheat on their partners all the time, right or wrong, and I’m worried the writers could get a bit preachy, even as some of them or their coworkers engage in the exact type of behavior they’re railing against.
There’s a reason employees tend to comingle and sleep with each other.
(And yes I understand if he was coming at the victims from a position of power he’s completely in the wrong, but from what’s we’re given in the script it doesn’t sound like, “Fuck me or you’re fired!”)
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