The Morning Show (also known as Morning Wars in Australia and Indonesia) is an American drama streaming television series that aired on Apple TV+ on November 1, 2019.
The Morning Show chronicles the crew and hosts of a breakfast news programme that airs on the Manhattan-based fictional UBA network and is based on Brian Stelter’s 2013 non-fiction book “Top of the Morning: Inside the Cutthroat World of Morning TV.”
It’s a gripping thriller set in the post-MeToo world that attempts to hold predatory and powerful men accountable through corrupt institutions.
As the host of the eponymous show, Alex Levy (Jennifer Aniston) is a household name.
However, Alex finds herself in a desperate battle to preserve her work after her 15-year partner, Mitch Kessler (Steve Carell), is fired due to sexual misconduct claims.
Her relationship with her new colleague, Bradley Jackson (Reese Witherspoon), swiftly devolves into a rivalry, further complicating matters.
‘The Morning Show,’ like other shows about media and TV journalism, leverages real-life headlines as plot devices to carry the tale along, though not to the extent of, say, Aaron Sorkin’s ‘The Newsroom.’
Here’s everything you need to know about the season 1 finale of ‘The Morning Show.’
Recap of Season 1 of The Morning Show
The New York Times is informed about an internal UBA inquiry into Mitch’s alleged sexual misconduct at the start of the series.
After that, Mitch is fired by the network president, Fred Micklen (Tom Irwin). Despite the fact that Alex is taken aback by the recent development, she walks in front of the camera to guarantee that the public continues to have a great impression of the show and the network.
Mitch, on the other hand, feels deceived after seeing the broadcast. He goes on a long rant about how males have exploited their power and influence to woo women since the beginning of time.
He doesn’t deny having affairs. Rather, he insists that every time he was with a lady from his office, the intimacy was mutually consenting. Paige, his wife, hears everything and decides to leave with their children.
Bradley erupts on a man in West Virginia at a protest protesting coal extraction as he shoves her cameraperson.
She has no idea that the incident has been videotaped at first, and the video quickly goes viral. Hannah Shoenfeld (Gugu Mbatha-Raw), the Morning Show’s head talent booker, shows up at Bradley’s home one evening and invites her to perform on the show.
Bradley accepts after overcoming his initial hesitancy, and she is taken to New York.
Bradley goes toe-to-toe with Alex during her appearance on the show, demonstrating that she is not scared by the other woman’s star power and attracting the attention of Cory Ellison (Billy Crudup), the man in head of UBA’s news division.
Bradley is approached by Cory, who offers her a job as a field reporter for the Morning Show. But first, she needs to speak with the show’s executive producer, Charlie “Chip” Black (Mark Duplass).
The encounter, however, does not go according to plan, and Bradley and Charlie wind up criticising one another. When a depressed Bradley is about to depart New York, she gets a call from Cory, who invites her to a formal dinner where Alex will be honoured.
When Bradley arrives at the event, Alex understands that the network is planning to fire her as well.
She makes the decision to take charge of her life and the storey, and when she takes the stage, she introduces Bradley as her new companion.
The studio is still in complete disarray the next day. A producer who had an affair with Mitch and worked with him, Mia Jordan (Karen Pittman), persuades Chip to let her be Bradley’s producer.
Bradley quickly demonstrates that he is far too self-reliant and vocal to control anyone, including Alex.
Bradley accidentally confesses that she had an abortion when she was 15 years old on the day of her debut appearance as the host of the Morning Show.
While this enrages the show’s regular viewers, Bradley’s frank and earnest statement instantly makes her a sensation among the younger population.
After Hannah persuades one of Mitch’s victims to appear on the show, Bradley interviews her and immediately begins asking questions that haven’t been thoroughly vetted, implying that the show and the network were complicit in Mitch’s predatory behaviour.
Get out your phones and mark your calendars. #TheMorningShow returns September 17 on Apple TV+
We'll be sharing the most dramatic moments from Season 1 leading up to the premiere to help you catch up. pic.twitter.com/zK5Y5ESdiY
— The Morning Show (@TheMorningShow) August 24, 2021
Alex begins to be envious of her actions, making her a divisive but popular character both inside and outside the studio.
Mitch comes up at the office one day, just before the New York Times publishes an article on Mitch’s behaviour and UBA’s conduct, and begs his former coworkers to vouch for him, but no one agrees.
As he walks away, he runs into Bradley, who questions if the network is aware of his conduct. Mitch’s response, while cryptic, essentially confirms her suspicions.
While reporting the fires in Los Angeles, the two hosts appear to heal fences between themselves.
After Alex informs Bradley of her planned divorce, the latter speaks with her estranged father for the first time in a long time. Bradley’s father was later proven to have killed a child while driving under the influence of alcohol, and Bradley was the one who reported it to the authorities.
Meanwhile, the show’s meteorologist, Yanko Flores (Néstor Carbonell), continues to have an affair with Claire Conway (Bel Powley), a production assistant several years his junior.
They appear to sincerely care for one another, and on Yanko’s insistence, the two of them approach HR, which only serves to complicate matters. Claire ends the connection later.
In episode 7, the storey travels back to the year 2017. Mitch raped Hannah while covering the Las Vegas shooting, it is discovered. He does recall it being consenting, though.
Hannah went to Fred after the incident and told him the truth. Rather than taking action against Mitch, Fred offered Hannah a promotion, which she has since come to regret.
Within the Morning Show, two distinct factions emerge by the penultimate episode. Mitch approaches Bradley and offers her an interview concerning Fred’s protection.
He also assures her that Hannah will back up his storey. Bradley decides to conduct it after realising that Mitch will go to another network if she doesn’t.
When she tells Alex about it, though, the old rivalry between them resurfaces.
Alex teams up with Fred, while Cory supports Bradley. Chip discovers Alex’s willingness to betray him and decides to assist Cory and Bradley in their interview with Mitch.
Fred, on the other hand, fires Chip, and Claire discovers Hannah has overdosed.
Season 1 of The Morning Show’s Ending Explained
Chip was the one who first informed the New York Times about Mitch’s actions, it is revealed near the conclusion.
He was aware that the network was seeking for a replacement for Alex, as the management seemed to regard Mitch as the show’s star prior to the charges.
Fred had no choice but to fire Mitch after the NYT reporters learned about the internal probe. The investigation began after Mia filed a report with HR.
The two of them had an affair, which Mia terminated when she called it quits. She was aware of Mitch’s behaviour with other women on work, and she couldn’t tolerate witnessing him conduct MeToo interviews while posing as a compassionate and paternal figure to the victims.
Season 1 concludes with a live broadcast of the Morning Show, during which Alex abruptly begins talking about how Fred and UBA were fully aware of Mitch’s actions and did nothing to stop it, and Bradley quickly joins her.
Their stream gets taken off as they hold the network accountable for what happened to the women who worked there.