Return of The Morning Show: A spoiler-free preview of season 2

The Morning Show was one of the most heavily promoted original series on Apple TV+ before the streaming service officially launched. It garnered attention for its timely storylines that tied into the Me Too movement, as well as an A-list cast that includes Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon, Steve Carell, and Billy Crudup, whose performance won Apple TV+ its first Emmy.

The first season, which was met with mixed reviews, centers around the goings-on of a popular daytime morning news show and its home network, UBA, which gets hit with a dose of controversy when longtime morning show co-host Mitch Kessler (Carell) is accused of sexual misconduct. The feminist themes continue when his good friend and co-host, Alex Levy (Aniston), finds herself acutely aware that the network might be looking to replace her with a younger, up-and-coming, but unseasoned journalist named Bradley Jackson (Witherspoon).

Season 1 ended on an emotional cliffhanger. Season 2 arrives almost two years later, and it’s worth the wait.

Alex and Bradley from The Morning Show greeting one another, Cory looking on, smiling.
Digital Trends got an early look at the second season of The Morning Show, and although the story gets deeply emotional and touches on a number of other topical subjects beyond Me Too, it handles each with grace, hanging on moments to allow fans to truly feel what is happening.

Without revealing any spoilers, here’s a rundown of what fans can expect from season 2 of The Morning Show, as well as a few observations. (Note: While there won’t be any season 2 spoilers, plot points from the first season of the series will be discussed.)

Mia in the newsroom with others in a scene from season 2 of The Morning Show.

The COVID-19 pandemic plays into the story in a big way

It makes sense since the series is about a morning news program that the COVID-19 pandemic would be factored into the story. It is indeed a constant force through the season as viewers get to see how a global pandemic might have looked from the perspective of news outlets trying to navigate the difficult and confusing situation as it evolves from a seemingly innocuous virus to a global pandemic.

Hannah from The Morning Show season 1, looking upset.

Hannah was not forgotten

Hannah met her tragic end in the season 1 finale, but she hasn’t been forgotten. As expected, the second season deals with the blowback the network experiences after Alex and Bradley’s on-air rant and the revelation of Hannah’s suicide.

A side profile of Juliana Marguiles as Laura Peterson in season 2 of The Morning Show.

There are exciting new characters

While the original cast returns in their roles, each having been affected in different ways by the events of season 1, season 2 adds some fantastic new cast members, including familiar faces and even a few notable cameos.

Some of the new characters already announced include Hasan Minhaj as Eric, an up-and-comer who joins The Morning Show; Julianna Margulies as Laura Peterson, a seasoned UBA anchor; and Greta Lee as Stella, the head of an online media company.

Chip smiling at Cory in a scene from season 2 of The Morning Show.

Themes of redemption

The series walks a fine line between redeeming characters who appeared beyond redemption and vilifying them, though the themes of sympathizing and forgiveness are explored as well.

In season 1, it’s clear several characters are guilty of heinous acts, at varying levels, both pertaining to the show and outside of it. Redemption isn’t delivered in the typical ways fans might be used to seeing it on screen, but extremely sensitive and emotional topics are handled in unique ways that allow fans to see different perspectives and sides of a story while also focusing on accountability for actions.

It’s no secret that one of the characters who will be explored is disgraced morning show anchor Mitch Kessler (Carell), who appears in short snippets in the trailer.

Stella and Cory looking at one another in a scene from The Morning Show, season 2.

There are still plenty of feminist undertones

One of the things The Morning Show did right in season 1 was portray the subtleties of misogyny, even when it involved those who weren’t acutely aware they were participating.

Season 2 expands on this in new and similarly subtle ways, as well as tackles other socially conscious topics like racism, politics, and miscarriages of justice.

Cancel culture plays heavily into the story

As non-celebrities, we all understand the concept of cancel culture, how it works, and how someone in the public eye can go from influencer to persona non grata in the blink of an eye. But one view fans never really get to see is how cancel culture affects the other person and those around them. This season explores just how quick people are to judge, and how damaging cancel culture can be.

Eric and Bradley behind the news desk in The Morning Show, season 2.

Prepare to feel

If there’s one element of the second season of The Morning Show that seems to carry more weight this time around, it’s that the show delves much deeper into some difficult topics that have risen to the forefront in the 21st century. The lead actors each put their acting talent on full display in standout scenes, and while some moments might feel contrived (or even overacted), the sentiments are heard loud and clear and hit right at the core of the issues.

The Morning Show remains an anchor for Apple TV+, and while the streaming service has since launched plenty of other fantastic original series, the cast, topical storylines, and strong second season solidify The Morning Show‘s position as one of its best.

Season 2 of The Morning Show premieres Friday, September 17, on Apple TV+ streaming service. New episodes will be released weekly through November 19. 

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