...don't even ignore 'em.
-- Samuel Goldwyn

Wednesday, February 07, 2007


I don't know if Jeff Zucker should get the credit-blame for the Today Show's post-Meredith revamp, but I have a bone to pick, and whichever bald-white-guy-in-suit who's running NBC takes the heat. It goes almost without saying that everything on TV has a promotional hook attached. But most news operations go hunting for outside experts to provide depth to health, science, and other specialized stories. Today has recently decided to build a cadre of its own experts, like Nancy Snyderman, the physician-talker, for example, ready at a moment's notice to articulate the details. I'm not so sure this is a good thing. I don't mind their having their "editors," and "consultants," but isn't it a bit, well, limiting? And is it truly journalism? I'm particularly uncomfortable with Dr. Keith Ablow as Today's "explainer," and, I think, resident bloviator on all things associated with human behavior. Like, today, he and his shaved, glowing pate held forth on the wayward astronaut and her alleged attack on an alleged romantic rival. This is a perfect TV story, and no show is going to waste time waiting for details before full on-camera psychiatric analyses. Ablow was there this morning, fully a-blow on the subject. When I start to feel creepy, I know we're in the hype zone. Who is this guy? Why is he the most qualified shrink in all of New York City, other than the fact that he's got a new TV talk show. I even assumed NBC-U had a financial interest in him. But he's with Warner Brothers. Anyway, Jeff, I'm getting that creepy itch. Is the budget so tight that you can't develop more real sources? TV is really thinking smaller these days, folks.

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