If there has been one thing that has defined HBO shows for the past couple of months, it's that everyone can't
shut up stop talking about them. Lena Dunham's "Girls" invoked all kinds of fiery (and kind of half baked) controversy, while the rest of us enjoyed the excellent show for its smart writing and great characters. And in case you haven't been near Twitter or any other kind of social media network in the past few weeks, Aaron Sorkin's "The Newsroom" has all kinds of people making solemn declarations about it's excellence or lack of excellence after two episodes. But in case you thought you'll run out of things to say, the show will be back next year.
After just two episodes, HBO has reupped "The Newsroom" for a second season, so everyone can argue it all over again in 2013. Hooray! The show centers on Will McAvoy (Jeff Daniels), a celebrated but mostly predictable newscaster who throws out the playbook and tries to start reporting the news where facts and integrity comes first. He's surrounded by a crack team that includes his executive producer/ex-wife Mackenzie MacHale (Emily Mortimer) -- with whom he shares an (obviously) testy relationship -- and a lot of young newbies including Dev Patel, Alison Pill and John Gallagher Jr. -- with folks like Olivia Munn, Chris Messia, Sam Waterston and Jane Fonda rounding things out. Yes, the show is uneven and at times naively idealistic, but it's entertaining and engaging (with solid performances) and people writing it (and Sorkin) off after two episodes are frankly, being a bit ridiculous.
In other HBO news, the further adventures of Sookie Stackhouse and the bloodsuckers of "True Blood" will be back for a sixth season. The has never been high quality TV, but decent enough guilty pleasure fare, but season four was truly a disaster. We haven't tuned into season five but we presume it's either a) back on track or b) still drawing a devoted crowd for the network to bring it back. Expect Anna Paquin, Alexander Skarsgard, Stephen Moyer, Deborah Ann Woll, Ryan Kwanten and everyone else to be back (unless they're killed off).