The song "Nemesis" by Benjamin Clementine opens Apple TV+'s The Morning Show, and the lyrics tell us all we need to know about the series: it's a story of betrayal, self-indulgence, and delusions of grandeur.
The premise centers on the major news anchors of the USA's most famous morning TV show, as one of them is accused by several people of sexual misconduct allegations.
Starring a heavyweight principal cast, The Morning Show engulfs the audience with its actors—and as we descend its dark story, the flaws that permeate their characters get put forth for all to see.
Led by Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon, and Steve Carell—who all deliver excellent turns in their roles—The Morning Show became Apple's first hit TV show, finding itself nominated for Emmys and Golden Globes for a stellar first season.
Although critics were more divided about the series' appeal, it has scored strongly with audiences, marking one of those rare occasions where critics are at odds with overall viewership.
If you haven't tuned into the show yet, here are several reasons why The Morning Show is worth your attention, and why you should dive in and start watching as soon as you can!
1. Real-World Parallels
Watching The Morning Show, we're reminded of its striking parallels to the modern world when it first begins, as Mitch Kessler (played by Steve Carell) is fired from his hosting position on the eponymous show.
This, of course, is similar to the story of Matt Lauer, former host of NBC's Today who was fired under similar accusations.
Rather than just focusing solely on this situation, The Morning Show has also incorporated the Trump presidency, the expansive #MeToo movement, and the COVID-19 pandemic, providing a sense of groundedness that many other TV series wouldn't dare to touch.
A show that takes itself seriously yet also provides a surreal levity, The Morning Show's incorporation of current world events makes it feel like the titular show is a living entity, which only aids the leading cast in bringing their roles to life.
2. Excellent Character Interactions
The Morning Show isn't so vast that its main characters rarely interact, as is the case with many ensemble TV series. No, it relishes bringing its heavyweight stars together for verbal sparring matches.
The interactions between Jennifer Aniston's Alex Levy and Reese Witherspoon's Bradley Jackson are captivating to watch, as is their ever-changing character dynamics.
However, it's Billy Crudup's eccentric Cory Ellison who's the beating heart of the show, maintaining the kind of exterior a budding serial killer might exhibit. His cast interactions are always episode highlights, consistently playing everyone around him like pawns in an invisible war.
While the series holds focus on its two leads, the rest of the cast all get fully explored backstories. The show drags the viewer into the world of The Morning Show, and one can't help but feel engaged with the characters' cutting back-and-forth narratives.
3. Set Design and Cinematography
Other than Succession, which itself is blessed with perfect costume design, no other show can quite compare to The Morning Show. The outfits worn by its characters perfectly accentuate who they are.
Bradley Jackson's wardrobe evolves the most over the course of the series, starting as more rustic and morphing towards more cut and trim as she gains wealth as host of The Morning Show.
The cinematography, too, is outstanding. New York feels like a city of vast proportions and potential, where the wealthier you are, the higher up in the building you get to go—something the creative team behind the show showcases so brilliantly here.
Each shot feels crafted and detailed, as though the series' producers gave no indication of time constraints and allowed the team to work on the sets to find their ideal setup. The result is that The Morning Show feels intimate yet expansive.
4. The Phenomental Cast
The great strength of The Morning Show is its cast. This collection of actors is one of the finest ever assembled for a series, all of whom fit into the show as though designed by a team of German engineers.
The principal cast—consisting of Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon, Steve Carell, Mark Duplass, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Julianna Margulies, and Billy Crudup—have brought their incredible talents to the show and made it a must-watch for drama lovers everywhere.
What's substantially more impressive, however, is its wider cast. Seeing actors like Marcia Gay-Harden, Holland Taylor, Mindy Kaling, Will Arnett, and Patrick Fabian guest star alongside the stacked cast? Phenomenal.
Indeed, it appears as if scoring a guest spot on The Morning Show is something coveted by Hollywood's talent pool, which only serves to make the series even more attractive to watch.