The UBA team heads to Vegas, where past misdeeds continue to haunt them.
Cory tells Fred over the phone to call off his dogs. He knows Fred's behind the stories about Hannah. Fred's in his bathroom in Milan, trying not to wake his wife. Fred says the stories, which he says are true, are Cory's fault because he wouldn't try to get the case dismissed when Fred asked. Fred says Cory doesn't have any power over him. And they still don't know what's in Maggie's book, but it'll be damaging to all of them. Fred points out that Cory himself won't come out looking good as he was there when they decided to pay Fred off.
Fred tells Cory he'll make a good replacement for Fred, as they need someone unsullied by Mitch who won't try to rip things down to the studs. Cory just needs to give Fred a pardon and an exit package and he'll leave.
Fred says if that goes away, Fred has no reason to spare him and wishes him luck.
Bradley sees Cory in the hallway. She didn't reply to his text, so he's waiting for her at her room. He asks if he can come in and she says he can. Cory asks if she'd still like him if he had a different job. She asks what's wrong and he says he just wanted to see a person who just cares for him as a person. He also wanted to talk to someone who knew Hannah. The wrongful death suit is heavy business and it's easy to forget that Hannah was a real person. Cory asks if Hannah told Bradley anything about her past or family. Bradley says her mom died when she was little and she wasn't close to her dad. Bradley asks if he's trying to get out of paying her dad. Cory says he definitely isn't.
Bradley and Alex do the show and talk about the upcoming debate on Valentine's Day.
Alex, Chip, Lindsey, Layla, Joel, and Aflamu talk about Bloomberg. Alex is trying to decide which questions to ask at the debate. They don't have a lot of time and doesn't want it to look like she's being steamrolled. She wants to do well and have the focus be on the candidates instead of her. Alex proposes as question to Bernie Sanders about Bloomberg. Joel pretends to be Sanders and replies. AS he talks, Isabella brings Alex a note. As Alex goes to get up, she winces as her back seizes and then excuses herself from the table.
Alex goes to her office to find Audra waiting for her. Audra asks how it is being back and Alex says it's good. Audra's there to have lunch with Daniel, but got there early and wanted to talk to Alex about Maggie. Her publishers want her first stop on her book tour to be at YDA and Audra wants to make sure Alex is okay with that. Audra doesn't even know what's in the book yet. She has to go to the publisher's office just to read it. But she's sure Alex will be a main character. Alex excuses herself to get back to work. As Audra goes to leave, Alex stops her and is surprised that Audra doesn't feel she's always been kind.
Yanko rehearses his weather report. When he sees Mia walking by, he rushes through the end and asks her why he's not going to the plaza. She says she can't send him out because it's too risky. They need to put the "spirit animal" thing to bed, but he thought he already did that. She says his apology came off as insincere, but she and Stella have a plan. He's going to learn about the Seminole tribe in Florida. He's fine with that, but doesn't understand why it has to be filmed. If it's not, no one will know and he needs to set an example. Yanko says he sets and example by being a first-generation Cuban in the US. Yanko thinks Stella is full of shit. He wants to deal with the issue quietly, not be Stella's tool to do it on television. He refuses to do it.
Alex asks Rena to leave her alone with Chip, who says Alex was gone so long, he let everyone leave. Alex tells him about her visit with Audra and Maggie's stop at YDA. Alex wants a copy of the book, but Chip says they're not going to give it to him. They're both probably in it. Alex says she can't work anymore and has to leave. Chip asks her to stay for just a few minutes because Madeleine is stopping by. Alex would love to, but she messed up her back and she needs to leave.
Paola finishes speaking into the camera and then tells Mitch to turn it off. It's the last one. She thinks they have everything they need. She thanks him for his help. She asks why he chose to quarantine with her instead of separately. He says he likes her company. Then he tells her they're not going to sleep together. He stumbles over his words for a minute and then says he's glad to be there and be able to help her. He also says it's not about her. She's beautiful and a good person. He's just pretty damaged. She knows both of those things. He asks why she wants to stay if she knows that. She says the damaged thing makes her feel at home.
Madeleine is happy to be at TMS and meet Alex, but Chip has to break the news that Alex has already left for the day. He's surprised Alex convinced him to come back, but Madeleine says whatever happens, they'll figure it out. She'll always teach and he can do whatever he wants. She asks him to take her out and he says he just needs to finish something up.
Kyle drops off Cory's clothes and tells him he chartered the plane for Cory to go to Green Bay, Wisconsin. When Kyle asks what's in Green Bay, Cory tells him it's a personal thing and Kyle's the only person he knows is going. He doesn't need a hotel because he's coming right back. Cory tells Kyle to cancel all his Vegas travel, saying Stella can handle it and he's busy in New York. Before he leaves, Kyle tells Cory that Bradley is dating Laura Peterson. Cory doubts it, but Kyle's friend saw them walking. Cory tells Kyle that no one likes a gossip. He also clarifies that it's not true.
Bradley doesn't want to leave, but Cory says she needs to get sleep before the board meeting. Bradley says she's going to refuse to come back unless they re-hire Cory. She has leverage. Cory tells her not to do that as he's better off this way. Bradley says it'll be weird to be there without him, but maybe it'll have its advantages. They start to lean in closer to each other.
Bradley asks Laura about her interview with Mayor Pete. Laura admits that she arranged it because she and Bradley didn't get to spend Valentine's Day together.
Nearby on the plane, Alex struggles to get comfortable with her back hurting. She asks Chip about pain medication, but he doesn't have any. He asks her if she wants to have her back looked at, but she has to moderate the debate. Alex is irritated that Laura is on the flight. She makes Alex uncomfortable because she's never liked Alex or been nice to her and Alex doesn't know why. She feels like there's a monster inside her body that she can't get out.
Chip arrives at The Pack Lounge and goes inside. He sees pictures of Hannah hanging behind the bar. Mr. Shoenfeld sees him and Cory introduces himself, but he knows who Cory is because he's suing him. He doesn't want Cory to tell him how great Hannah was and how sorry he is for his loss. He wants to know why Cory thinks it's okay just to walk in there. Cory says it's not okay, but he needed to talk to him without the lawyers. He tells Hannah's dad they're on the same side of the issue, that the network is at fault and they should pay. Hannah's dad knows they have the money and he wants them to pay because they think consequences don't apply to them. Cory tells Mr. Shoenfeld to take the offered money. He says they'll settle if they pay him what they paid Fred. Cory says they're not going to pay him that much. He wants to know why they agreed to pay Fred that much. Cory tells him his case will get thrown out, so he should take the deal so he gets something. He says the money is meaningless to him unless he can use it to resurrect Hannah or buy her a better dad. Cory warns him that Hannah's about to get smeared in the press. They're going to make it seem like she had problems long before UBA, problems with drugs and that she used sex to get things she wanted. Mr. Shoenfeld asks if it's true. Cory doesn't answer and leaves the bar.
Chip watches Alex as they fly at night. When they arrive, Isabella tells Alex she'll be meeting with Eric and Deena to get acquainted and then they'll do a mock debate. Then she has to get to bed early so she can be up to do TMS at 4:00 AM. Alex isn't interested in partying anyway. Chip tries to calm Alex down, but then they see Maggie. They look away, but Maggie spots them before getting in her cab.
Mitch wakes up to the sounds of Paola playing with his dog outside. He goes out to the balcony to watch them.
Stella is walking on the street when a man tells her to take her virus and go back to China. She's shocked and confronts him, but he throws more racist abuse her way. She gets into her car, but can still hear him as she leaves. Yanko, who has witnessed this, tells the man how ignorant he is, adding that Stella is Korean, not Chinese. The man spews more racism at Yanko, then shoves him. Yanko punches the man several times until he's pulled off him.
Alex, Eric, and Deena end their mock debate. Alex asks Isabella for some pain medication. Robin sends them all off to get some sleep as they're starting again in the morning as soon as Alex is done with TMS. Chip tells Alex she did well. He asks her to go for a drink with him. He has to help her get up and walk because of her back.
Mitch asks if Paola has heard from Professor Viola. She hasn't, but hopes he's okay. She's watched his interview so many times. It bums her out every time. It's great, but all she sees is missed opportunities. Mitch is sure it'll lead to good things for her. She asks him to let her interview him. He says no because of what happened the last time he was supposed to be interviewed. Paola promises it would just be for her, for practice.
Alex is still stewing over Maggie's book. She asks what he thinks is in the book. He thinks the Vegas stuff is in there, but Alex doesn't know who would have told her. Chip thinks Mia might have. That was the same night Mitch asked him to take Mia off his team and he just did it. That could be in there. That's when Alex said she didn't want Mitch's garbage. Alex doesn't remember saying that and doesn't believe she did. Chip says she conveniently forgets a lot of things and it's frustrating. She asks if he walked to Maggie. He says yes, but not on the record. Alex is horrified. Chip says he tried to help her, even though she got him fired. He did her PR. Alex realizes she doesn't have any allies. She struggles to get to her room with her back pain. Chip says he wanted someone to know he wasn't a bad person, that he's the one who leaked the story about Mitch. Alex realizes he wanted to look like a hero, but wonders what she looks like in that story. Alex goes into her hotel room and Chip leaves.
Earl tells Cory the story is killed everywhere but The Vault. He asks if Shoenfeld will back down if they publish. That's what Fred wants. Cory says that's not the point. The point is keeping a dead woman from being dragged through the mud. Earl asks if anyone cares since her dad doesn't. Cory says he cares. As soon as The Vault confirms what they have, they'll run it. The only thing that will kill it is a more salacious story.
Bradley is enjoying breakfast in Laura's room. She's glad she's not moderating the debate because then she wouldn't have gotten to spend time with Laura. Bradley asks what Laura's beef with Alex is. Laura says she was anchoring at YDA and doing really well. She had a small group of friends who knew who she was. Then Alex came to town. She made friends with some of Laura's friends and started hanging out. Back then, she was more easygoing. But she was always focused on her career. She eventually found out Laura was a lesbian and seemed fine with it. But then YDA found out right after Alex found out. Laura doesn't know for sure that she told YDA, but Alex wasn't among those who kept showing up for her after she was fired. She stopped getting Alex's calls and invites. Then she was walking down the street and saw Alex coming toward her. Alex saw her, then looked away and crossed the street. She never forgot that. Bradley asks if she's asked Alex about it, but Laura says there's nothing to say. Life is too short to waste it on people like that. Bradley gets a text from Cory asking if she's in bed. She says she was asleep until he texted. Laura leaves the room for a minute as Bradley gets a text asking if she's going to answer her phone. She calls Cory and says the phone didn't ring. He says he had them put him through to room 735. She pretends she was sleeping through it. He asks for her advice. Just then, Laura comes back in and Cory hears her through the phone before Bradley can tell her it's Cory on the phone.
Alex is in pain in bed. She has her feet propped up on pillows.
Cory asks Bradley about the situation with Hannah and her dad. If he can't figure out how to get it killed, it'll be published. Bradley is upset because the one thing Hannah wanted was not to have her name out there. It already is, but this will make it worse. Bradley suggests going to the Times and telling them Fred is trying to libel Hannah. He knows Hannah confided things in Bradley that she didn't tell anyone else. He asks if, if he could find some way to contain this, he should do it. Bradley tells him he should and promises to try to think of a way to stop it. He appreciates her help and tells her he'll let her get some sleep.
Mitch sits in front of the camera. After a few moments, Mitch starts to answer Paola's question of what he did wrong. He knows he shouldn't have done any of what he did. He didn't want to be the person he is. He didn't want to hurt anyone. He didn't want people to think he was the kind of person who could hurt someone. Now one of those women is dead: Hannah Shoenfeld. That shouldn't have happened, but he was self-absorbed and ignorant and he thought it was what she wanted. If she'd been able to tell him she didn't ... It's easy to say right now, but if they don't believe him, no reason to spend any time speaking to him. That guy is a monster. As bad as it was, sleeping with Hannah wasn't his worst mistake. A year ago, during the unpleasantness, he was scared and trying to claw his way back. So he asked Hannah to help him, which was stupid. But he did it. And she told him how she felt and how it had hurt her. It was so obvious that she was in pain, but he still couldn't see it. He didn't understand why she felt that way. He pressed it and said horrible things. And to him, that's his real crime. Because he can't write that off as ignorance. He knew what he was doing and did it anyway.
Alex knocks on a hotel door and Maggie answers. Alex says she needs to talk to her. She's in visible pain because of her back. Alex is angry that Maggie has written a book about her and caused her pain and now is pretending to care. Maggie clarifies that the book was fact-checked. Alex says anyone who claims to know anything about her life is full of it. Maggie tried to reach out to her and be fair to her, but Alex wouldn't speak to her. Maggie asks what she wants. Alex asks to see the book, but Maggie doesn't have a copy. Alex starts looking around. Alex finds what looks to be the book, "The Wrong Side of the Bed: Corruption, Cover-Ups, and a Crisis of Culture on America's Number One Morning Show." Alex opens the book to find all the pages are blank. It's just a mock-up of the cover. Alex asks what's in the book. Maggie says there's nothing in there about her that she doesn't already know. Alex knows she doesn't come off well as Maggie's never liked her. Maggie says it's not true that she's never liked Alex. She asks if there's something specific Alex wants to know. Alex asks about what Laura implied about her sleeping with Mitch. Maggie confirms that the book says that. Alex denies that it's true and asks who told her. Alex says it's libel and Maggie needs to fix it or she'll feel the wrath of god. Maggie tells her to sue if it's not true, but the book is done. And she's not going to include this little epilogue, so Alex can't say she doesn't care. Alex begs Maggie not to associate her with Mitch in that way. Alex asks if Maggie spoke to Mitch and if Mitch told her that. She spoke to Mitch briefly, off the record. He said, "Fuck off." Alex leaves the room and struggles to walk down the hallway.
Eric introduces the debate. It's playing on the TV as Alex settles in for her flight. Bradley has replaced her and they send get well soon wishes to Alex.
- Jennifer Aniston as Alex Levy
- Reese Witherspoon as Bradley Jackson
- Billy Crudup as Cory Ellison
- Mark Duplass as Chip Black
- Greta Lee as Stella Bak
- Julianna Margulies as Laura Peterson
- Nestor Carbonell as Yanko Flores
- Karen Pittman as Mia Jordan
- Desean K. Terry as Daniel Henderson
- Ruairi O'Connor as Ty Fitzgerald
- Steve Carell as Mitch Kessler
Special Guest Stars
- Mindy Kaling as Audra Khatri
- Marcia Gay Harden as Maggie Brener
- Valeria Golino as Paola Lambruschini
- David Paymer as Mr. Shoenfeld
- Tom Irwin as Fred Micklen
- Jack Conley as Earl
- Hasan Minhaj as Eric Nomani
- Katie Aselton as Madeleine
- Hannah Leder as Isabella
- Victoria Tate as Rena Robinson
- Shari Belafonte as Julia
- Eli Bildner as Joel Rapkin
- Amber Friendly as Layla Bell
- Michelle Meredith as Lindsey Sherman
- Theo Iyer as Kyle
- Aflamu Johnson as Aflamu
- Candice Ramirez as Jasmyn
- Choni Francis as RJ Smith
- Stephen Friedrich as Jeffrey Gordon
- Brad Lee Wind as Kenny
- Marisa Echererria as Robin
- Casey Adams as NY Pedestrian
The Morning Show Segments
Notes and Trivia
A complete overview of this episode's crew can be found here.
|The Morning Show Season 2|
|#01||"My Least Favorite Year"||#06||"A Private Person"|
|#02||"It's Like The Flu"||#07||"La Amara Vita"|
|#04||"Kill the Fatted Calf"||#09||"Testimony"|
|<< Season 1|