Until now, the third season of The Morning Show on Apple TV+ has followed several structural changes in the UBA. Alex has been reinstated in her position as a co-anchor of TMS, whereas Bradley has started hosting the evening news. On the other hand, Cory tries to get a deal with Paul Marks’s company to secure UBA’s future in the constantly evolving media landscape. Christina, Stella, and Mia have to contend with the racism ingrained in the organization and rise above it. The Morning Show (Season 3) Episode 5 takes a look back at the lives of these characters during the pandemic. This is when Bradley moved in with Laura – her co-anchor at The Morning Show. We get a look at a harsh truth related to Hal and Bradley’s relationship. Spoilers ahead.
The Morning Show (Season 3) Episode 5 “Love Island” Recap:
The fifth episode shows the lives of characters during the pandemic. In March 2020, Bradley (Reese Witherspoon) started hosting TMS at UBA. Also, she was in a relationship with Laura (Juliana Margulies), and they had not made it public. A majority of the staff was suffering from one or the other symptoms of Covid. Cory (Billy Crudup) had started panicking over a set of sudden changes. As a result of a shortage of content, he expected Stella (Greta Lee) to find some solution to help grow UBA+.
In the middle of this state of chaos, Cory offers Bradley a place to stay. However, she had already decided to go live with Laura in Montana. She asks him to forget whatever happened with him, her, and her brother Hal (Joe Tippett). Although awkwardly, Cory puts the topic to rest. Eventually, Bradley drives up to Laura’s house to cherish their time together. They discuss whether they should reveal their relationship to the viewers. At the time, Bradley didn’t think that was necessary.
Bradley’s Family Issues
While staying with Laura, Bradley has to keep up with Hal’s mood swings from a distance. Hal struggles to handle the responsibility of himself and his mother. Upon hearing that, Laura tries to take Bradley’s mind off of the burden. But she ends up saying something insulting about Bradley’s family. Bradley does not like Laura’s judgemental, slightly condescending approach to looking at the world she grew up in. So, she responds by saying that Laura needs to understand her world to truly love her. Laura believes her judgemental attitude may have roots in her past or may just be a part of her nature. Anyhow, soon after, they get over this argument. Later in the summer, Bradley agrees to talk about her relationship with Laura on air.
Cory’s Power Moves
Cory meets realtor Salma to find him a house. He looks specifically for the expensive places. She asks whether that means UBA+ is doing surprisingly well. They sort of connect through these casual moments of flirting where Cory chooses to overspend – probably to present his house as a status symbol – or just to fulfill his long-standing dream. Eventually, he finalizes a lavish house with exquisite décor – the same house in the Hamptons where we see the UBA Upfronts meeting happen.
While spending time around his new place, Salma shows him billionaire Paul Marks (Jon Hamm) surfing on the ocean tides. Later on, he sees Paul justifying his fat paycheck despite the ever-rising wealth disparity issues. Cory is impressed by Paul’s unapologetic attitude toward justifying his greed masquerading as ambition. Although Salma tries to stay in touch with Cory, he starts to detach himself from her. It almost feels like he used his charm to win her over – so that he can get in touch with people with power, and then abandoned her.
Bradley finds footage of some protestors from the uprising – after the horrifying incident with George Floyd. Stella appreciates her input but tells her to wait until they find a personal thread to narrate this story. Mia (Karen Pittman) also says she agrees with it. At the time, she was staying with her partner – Andre (Clive Standen). She finds herself losing hope in their country, rising above the systemic issue of racism. Although Andre tries to calm her, she cannot help but get emotional seeing the sad state of affairs.
Stella asks Cory to increase the budget to work with – so that she can bring more content to UBA+. Cory says it is impossible. So, she suggests some ideas to work with, including more interviews with Alex, taking control of her narrative. Cory asks her to put the Mitch Kessler documentary in their catalog. She objects to showing the sexual offender talking for hours about his pain & guilt. If they are not to make that tone-deaf decision, Cory asks her to get at least something else on the floor to feed their viewers stuck in their houses.
Bradley’s Personal Life
Bradley sees Alex doing incredibly well in her comeback to the UBA network news. She feels Alex may even replace the current anchor for the evening news. Hearing that, Laura motivates Bradley to bag that opportunity. Bradley does not seem so sure about it. Later on, Bradley learns something shocking about her family – her mother has Covid. Although Bradley wants to come help take care of her, Hal says he will take this responsibility. Laura still fails to understand the intricacies of Bradley’s family dynamic.
Eventually, when Laura’s friends come to hang out with them, Bradley learns that her mother just died. Over time, Bradley keeps getting more and more distant from Laura. Since Laura keeps providing solutions from her point of view, Bradley decides to confront her about it. She believes Laura uses her as a sort of showcase for her friends. In their unfortunate argument, where neither of them is completely right or wrong, they share their differences openly, which results in their eventual separation.
The Changes in TMS
Since Bradley goes off TMS, UBA cannot have just Laura – since the viewers saw her and Bradley like a package deal. As a result, they decided to bring Alex back with Yanko (Nestor Carbonell). That is when Mia suggested they should have a person of color in the third position. That’s how Christina (Nicole Beharie) came into the picture. On the other hand, Stella has to make a difficult decision to put the Mitch Kessler documentary on UBA+.
Mia sees Andre watching it, which upsets her. He asks why she is still working for UBA if they enabled Mitch’s behavior. It brings out their differences in loyalty and a sense of responsibility toward others. Afterwards, their relationship starts suffering from its results. Andre makes a reckless decision to go out to a bar to have a drink – despite knowing the implications of his actions on Mia’s life. As a result, Mia decides to pack her bags and leave the house immediately. Later on, he leaves the country for an assignment in Afghanistan. Meanwhile, Bradley leaves to cover something in Washington, DC.
The Morning Show (Season 3) Episode 5 “Love Island” Ending Explained:
The White House Incident
During the winter, Stella meets her old friend Kate, who works at Hyperion. She feels disposable in the organization and appreciates Stella left it instead of catering to corporate culture. It makes Stella rethink where she is in her life in the present. Consequently, she starts getting worried about Bradley and how she is coping with the chaos in DC. With Trump’s explosive speeches and public announcements, Stella questions whether she made a wrong decision by sending Bradley there. Despite that, Bradley still enters the White House to cover the Capitol attack.
What does Bradley learn while covering the Capitol attack?
While taking footage of the white protestors acting recklessly, Bradley notices a man attacking a police officer. Moments later, she realizes that this man is Hal. Later, when she confronts him about it, he reveals that he is about to become a father. So, Bradley decides to protect her brother. She deletes the video of Hal attacking the policeman. Soon after, she and Cory both get subpoenas to reveal the attacker’s identity. That is finally when Bradley has to come clean. She reveals that Hal was the attacker at the Capitol.
Even though it almost jeopardizes their entire network, Cory takes care of the matter and helps Bradley from further getting dragged into any controversy. But he insists they never talk a word about it. So, in the UBA Upfronts gathering, when Cory reminded Bradley about ‘all that he has done for her,’ this is probably what he meant.