As President Obama prepares the address the American people tonight about what - hopefully - will be the movement towards a peaceful solution to the horror of Syria's chemical weapons, The Newsroom 2.8 brought us back to just this past November and the election of Obama to the Presidency for his second term,
Actually, though, the episode had very little political or even news-coverage content, and instead focused on MacKenzie's attempt to find some closure for the false report that Obama used chemical weapons that she and the ACN staff both above and below her were responsible for airing. In particular, she wants Will to fire her, as her only honorable exit.
Will thinks otherwise - unlike MacKenzie and Charlie, Will is inclined to accept Leona's impassioned refusal to fire Will and Charlie, and her exhortation to Charlie to win back the public's trust. But what's really at stake here - in a sly movie for the story of the series that undercuts politics and news - is Will's still not yet coming to terms with Mac's cheating on him back in 2007 (before the series began). He keeps coming back to this, at every turn in the conversation about her professional future.
Why indeed? This is still a bit of a mystery, because she clearly loves and loved Will. And Will thought he correctly got that, during their relationship. The vague explanation we've so far received about all that is Mac realized how deeply she loved Will while she was cheating, but the die was already cast, and led to the death of their relationship.
But not the intense love the two still share, which animates a lot of the major professional crises on the show, and which we'll hopefully see more about - and maybe even more of - when the series concludes its brief second season next week.