When Mack hears that Will’s here, she rushes into his office to talk to him about what he’ll say when he gets on the air. Will gives a concise statement of what he’ll say first… and then repeats it word for word. Also, he’s forgotten how to tie his tie. Concerned, Mack asks, “What is wrong with you?” Giggling, Will announces that he’s wasted. Over Mack’s shocked reply, he tries to explain about his repetitive stress injury from baseball blah blah, but Mack says he obviously can’t do the news like this. Will gets serious very quickly. He takes her shoulders (gently) and says, “Mackenzie, listen to me: there is no way–no way–I’m not reporting this story.” Mack sighs and says, “Of course.” He promises not to let her down. This still seems like a really bad idea, Mack. Especially when Will accidentally says, “We got Obama!” on the way out of the office. Mack’s pained cry is worth a dozen words, but Will says he got that out of his system.
While Elliot and Don discuss in quiet tones how the killing of bin Laden might have been accomplished, Sloan interrupts to say she has first confirmation: EKIA, or Enemy Killed In Action, from someone at Central Command (CENTCOM). Seconds later, at ACN, Jim reports a second confirmation from a writer at the New York Timeswho has it from two sources. When he, Mack, Maggie, and Will take it to Charlie, though, he won’t let them report it yet. He wants to wait until the White House tells them it’s reportable. He points out that the situation surrounding OBL’s death is unclear right now–troops could still be in jeopardy, we could be at war with Pakistan, etc. This persuades the others that it’s a good idea to wait. He does however tell the rest of the newsroom that it’s bin Laden, saying that they’re going to remember this night for the rest of their lives. I felt weird at that line because, while I do vividly remember hearing this news and my reaction to it and the reaction of the internet, I had actually forgotten until this episode that it happened on May 1, 2011. Whoops. Anyway. Charlie announces that “at the order of the President, US Special Forces have shot and killed Osama bin Laden,” and most of the newsroom erupts into cheers and applause. Kaylee, though, looks somber and goes out onto the balcony. It turns out, when Jim and Neal go out to check on her, that she’s not really sure how to react; she lost her dad in the Twin Towers. I really appreciate Sorkin for making Kaylee more than a one-dimensional hot girlfriend for Neal.
The DC newsroom is not so easily convinced to wait for the White House go-ahead. But when Jane in DC tries to move ahead with reporting the news without Charlie’s okay, Mack goes all awesome and cuts the fiber for a good ten seconds to assert her (and Charlie Skinner’s) control. Thank you, show, for finally giving us some more evidence that Mack is a good EP.
Maggie comes over to Jim’s desk to remind him that he needs to break up with Lisa-and he needs to do it tonight, otherwise he’ll end up sleeping with her again first. And then I get another pleasant surprise, because instead of more awkward discussion, Lisa comes over and asks to talk to Jim alone. Then she breaks up with him, very reasonably and gently. She knows he never really wanted to be fixed up with her anyway, and that he’s just been too polite to do anything to stop this. Then she goes to talk to “Spy Girl,” aka Maggie, who’s been watching from her desk. Lisa says she saw Maggie’s face when she said “I love you” to Jim earlier and she’s not going to do this to Maggie anymore. Maggie protests emphatically that she’s with Don. Of course she then has to go and bring some more awkwardness to the situation by dragging Lisa back over to Jim so she (Maggie) and Jim can both state for the record that they have no romantic feelings for each other at all. Poor Lisa is unconvinced by their mutual declarations. Man, I’d really like to go back to enjoying Maggie’s character instead of mostly finding her annoying.