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Amen is the 5th episode of Season 1 on HBO series The Newsroom.


While covering the forced ejection of Egypt's president, the team learns of a protest in Wisconsin that is condemning the governor's plan to balance the budget at the detriment of teachers and other public sector union employees, leading everyone to try to cover both stories simultaneously. Will becomes convinced of a conspiracy by the Koch brothers to "rig the system" in their favor by fighting for Citizens United then abolishing the Unions. Takes place between Thursday, February 10, 2011, and Monday, February 14, 2011.


News Night covers civil unrest in Cairo after the Egyption president refuses to leave his post despite losing the election. Elliot Hirsch travels to Cairo to report from the scene but is forced to remain inside when riots break out. Don Keefer is disappointed that Elliot is not out in the middle of things.

Maggie Jordan catches wind of a new story during the broadcast; a protest in Wisconsin that is condemning the governor's plan to balance the budget at the detriment of teachers and other public sector union employees. Executive Producer Mackenzie MacHale agrees to cover both and Maggie and senior producer Jim Harper scramble to prepare footage for the segments. Maggie clumsily shuts a door in Jim's face, injuring him.

After the show, Mac chairs a staff meeting where a new story about the Koch brothers is discussed. They have linked their involvement with Citizens United to a plan to eventually abolish workers unions. Neal raises the idea of using a stringer in Cairo to get better coverage, having already established contact with someone using the alias "Amen", who's real name one later hears is Kahlid. Charlie warns Will and Mac about another TMI piece, this time about Mac's relationship with Wade Campbell and him using News Night appearances to further his political ambitions.

Don gets word that Elliot went out into the riots and was attacked. Elliot is battered but alive, and on his way back to the USA. Mac approaches Sloan about getting some tutoring as she has been booked to speak about the economy on a panel and actually knows nothing about the subject.

The following day ACN's own morning show covers the TMI story about Mac, until Charlie angrily warns the presenter to stop. Neal introduces Kahlid to the team via video chat and Mac convinces him to use his real identity to ensure that his reporting is credible. Charlie, Mac, and Will continue to discuss the attacks by gossip publications but Charlie does not mention the pressure from Leona Lansing. Kahlid's first appearance on the show goes well. Gary Cooper passes on a rumor to Will that TMI columnist Nina Howard accepts protection money.

Maggie gives Jim a set of instructions to ensure that he gives her roommate, Lisa Lambert, a good Valentine's Day. That night Sloan tries to teach Mac some fiscal lessons but Mac is preoccupied with her personal life.

Neal loses contact with Kahlid and fears that something has happened to him. Elliot is welcomed back to the newsroom. Don is annoyed when Charlie insists that Elliot take time off to recover, feeling responsible for provoking Elliot into venturing out.

Gary delivers an apology from the morning team to Will. The staff meet to discuss the Koch brothers story but Neal interrupts to say that Kahlid is definitely missing. Charlie hosts a crisis meeting and the senior staff go to demand help from Reese Lansing, who proves to be out of the building after Don tries to knock down his door. Neal is so upset over putting Kahlid in danger that he punches a monitor, breaking both it and his hand.

The staff struggle to locate Kahlid while also prepping their next show. Will speaks to Don about his anger over the events. Neal discovers that Kahlid is in Egyptian military custody and that they are demanding an extortionate ransom. The broadcast covers the teacher's protest in depth. Wade visits the offices looking for Mac and she breaks up with him for using her to further his political ambitions. Will disappears to Hang Chews, planning to pay off Nina. He changes his mind when she calls herself a journalist and instead warns her against attacking his staff again.

Lisa comes into the office, furious that Jim forgot about their date and stood her up. Maggie admits that she tried to arrange it and Jim apologizes.

Will pays for Kahlid's release. Mac arranges for the staff to each give Will a cheque to contribute, mimicking a scene from one of Will's favorite films, Rudy. Neal re-establishes contact with the newly freed "Amen"/Kahlid.



Guest starring



Opening credits

  1. Francine Maisler &
  2. Nancy Perkins - Casting
  3. Richard Hoover - Production Designer
  4. Rob Seidenglanz - Editor
  5. Todd McMullen - Director of Photography
  6. Alex Wurman - Music
  7. Thomas Newman - Main title theme
  8. Lauren Lohman - Co-producer
  9. Eli Bush - Co-producer
  10. Dauri Chase - Co-producer
  11. Christine Larson-Nitzsche - Co-producer
  12. Paul Redford - Co-Executive Producer
  13. Greg Mottola - Co-Executive Producer
  14. Denis Biggs - Co-Executive Producer
  15. Aaron Sorkin - Creator
  16. Aaron Sorkin - Writer
  17. Daniel Minahan - Director

Closing credits

  1. Alan Poul - Executive Producer
  2. Scott Rudin - Executive Producer
  3. Aaron Sorkin - Executive Producer
  4. Sarah Rath - Associate Producer
  5. Christine Larson-Nitzsche - Unit Production Manager
  6. Mark Tobey - First Assistant Director
  7. Zach Hunt - Second Assistant Director
  8. Julie Camino - Production Supervisor
  9. Hope Hanafin - Costume Designer
  10. David Handelman - Story Editor
  11. Ian Reichbach - Story Editor
  12. Brendan Fehily - Staff Writer
  13. Cinque Henderson - Staff Writer
  14. Amy Rice - Staff Writer
  15. Gideon Yago - Staff Writer
  16. Evyen J. Klean - Music Supervisor



The Newsroom
#101 "We Just Decided To" #106 "Bullies"
#102 "News Night 2.0" #107 "5/1"
#103 "The 112th Congress" #108 "The Blackout Part I: Tragedy Porn"
#104 "I'll Try to Fix You" #109 "The Blackout Part II: Mock Debate"
#105 "Amen" #110 "The Greater Fool"