The Morning Show came out of the gate as one of Apple TV+’s hottest original series. In fact, it secured the streaming service’s first award nominations with Golden Globes nods for Best Television Series – Drama, as well as nominations for the performances of both Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon.
Following behind-the-scenes of a popular network talk show, the series is centered around Alex Levy (Aniston) who must deal with the fallout when her long-time co-host Mitch Kessler (Steve Carell) is fired due to sexual misconduct allegations (sound familiar?). Witherspoon, meanwhile, plays Bradley Jackson, an ambitious but unconventional local news reporter who finds herself embroiled in the aftermath.
With the airing of the final episode today, the series’ first season ends with a bang, setting up an intriguing stage for season 2, which has already been greenlit. Below are six major questions we have after watching the series. (Note: major spoilers for the series, including the season finale, ahead, so do not read until you’ve finished watching episode 10.)
The biggest question hinges on the future of the show within the show. In the final moments of the episode, Alex and Bradley unleash an angry on-air tirade, chastising the network not only for its failure to do something about the misconduct that was happening right under their noses, but also their actions to cover it up.
It’s certain that Fred Micklen (Tom Irwin), the network’s president, will be fired after being condemned publicly for his involvement in the cover-ups. He’ll probably face public backlash, too, as the network’s fall guy. Is his character gone for good or will he be the new primary antagonist?
With the network in a precarious position, taking action against Alex and Bradley for hijacking the broadcast and speaking out against them could send the wrong message. The same goes for condemning the man who allowed the cameras to keep rolling, Cory Ellison (Billy Crudup), who was out for Micklen’s job from the get-go. He could be rewarded for his bravery while suffering consequences behind the scenes, or maybe they’ll send him packing, causing a public uproar.
The biggest question remains how everyone on the show will move forward following Hannah’s suicide, fueled by pressures and trauma relating to her sexual assault. How the network tries to remove any connection between that incident and their organization might be the central focus of season two.
Through the first season, Bradley and Alex’s up-and-down relationship has been central to the storyline. They despise and compete with one another one minute, then confide in and respect each other the next. They’re very different people from very different backgrounds, yet they also seem to have more in common than they care to admit.
One can only assume that what has happened will bring them closer together. But Bradley may harbor resentment for believing that Alex always knew what Mitch was doing and remained silent.
With the future of the show up in the air, and the pair now becoming unofficial faces for women’s rights in the workplace, it will be interesting to see how the dynamic changes between them.
Mitch finally discovered who anonymously reported his misdeeds, and, because of Hannah’s suicide and Alex and Bradley’s public denouncement of him, he really has no one left on his side. Now alone to deal with his immense guilt (or anger in arrogantly believing his own innocence), is there really anything left for the character?
Carell only signed on for a single season of the series so it’s entirely possible that the show will go on without him. His storyline has (sort of) wrapped up. And the show has legs to stand on beyond his character. Carell did make a seriously compelling antagonist, but the story became much bigger than any single character.
The Morning Show’s executive producer, Charlie “Chip” Black (Mark Duplass), was one of the first season’s most likable characters. As Alex’s longtime friend, he was so loyal to her that he ratted out Mitch to save her from losing her job when he found out the network was considering replacing her.
After becoming the fall guy for the network, Chip violently confronted Mitch and was seen roaming the streets, despondent, disgraced, and out of work. The future doesn’t look so bright for Chip, but we can’t imagine this will be the last we see of him.
What happens when Alex finds out what Chip did for her, especially after she stabbed him in the back to save herself? Their relationship is sure to be explored further in season two.
We get little glimpses into Bradley’s family throughout season 1, including her mother Sandy (Brett Butler), her absent alcoholic father (David Morse), and her addict brother Hal (Joe Tippett). Will we get to see more of her life, and will the media start digging into the past that has clearly influenced the woman Bradley is today?
Meanwhile, Alex’s estranged husband Jason (Jack Davenport) asks for an official divorce. Is it possible there could be a reconciliation between them? And will Alex’s on-screen rant finally get her in her teenage daughter’s good graces?
So much came to a head in the season finale that season 2 might see the focus shift from a disgraced morning show host to what went on behind the scenes to allow his actions to continue for so long in the first place.
The main antagonist for season 2 probably won’t be Mitch or any single individual for that matter. It might be the network itself and its long list of enablers. Now that the lid has been completely blown open, The Morning Show is setting itself up to for a potentially explosive — and very timely — second season.
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