‘The Morning Show’ trailer: Aniston and Witherspoon’s workplace catfight

Apple TV has released the long-delayed trailer for “The Morning Show,” a backstage exposé of the politics of a TV show much like “Today” or “Good Morning America.”

In the clip released Monday morning, talk show co-host Alex Levy (Jennifer Aniston) surprises the producers in the control room by announcing the firing of her on-air co-host of 15 years, Mitch Kessler (Steve Carell). Much like the “Today” show after Matt Lauer was shown the door following allegations of sexual misconduct, the network decides the politically correct solution to the problem is to hire a woman as his replacement.

Enter Reese Witherspoon. In the umpteenth iteration of her classic role as Tracy Flick in “Election,” the steel magnolia, her usual Arctic blond hair knocked down a few shades to brown, plays ambitious underdog Bradley Jackson — a reporter in the field who is clearly out of her depth in the hosting chair but who can smell fear on Levy, determined by network brass to have passed her “sell-by date,” and goes in for the kill.

“The Morning Show” seems poised to advance stereotypical tropes of workplace competition between women that leads to the eventual “Dynasty”-like catfight. With Jackson’s ascent on the program, Levy begins to lose her footing, fighting with her producer (Mark Duplass) and leading network suit Corey Ellison (Billy Crudup) to lick his chops. “Watching a beloved woman’s breakdown is timeless American entertainment,” he says.

Despite its cynical portrait of women in the industry, “The Morning Show” would seem to offer Aniston her best role in years. Her character’s fight for survival forms the story arc. Based on Brian Stelter’s best-seller about the tumultuous career of Ann Curry at NBC, “The Morning Show,” which has a 20-episode, two-season order, debuts this fall.

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