Ricochet is the best place on the internet to discuss the issues of the day, either through commenting on posts or writing your own for our active and dynamic community in a fully moderated environment. In addition, the Ricochet Audio Network offers over 50 original podcasts with new episodes released every day.
If you watch network news – and if you do, give my regards to the other 17 people – this may be a shock: Katie Couric’s future unclear at CBS.
This past spring, CBS News president Sean McManus and executive vice-president Paul Friedman discussed whether to try to bring an end to what may be the last great experiment in network news: Katie Couric, anchorwoman. Though her reported $15 million annual contract is not up until next June, one idea that was floated was for CBS to buy out the remainder of Couric’s contract this September and put in someone new this fall, according to people familiar with the conversation.
She might ankle over to NBC, or CNN, where she will be paid great sloshing buckets of money again. What was the reason for the failure? Did she smother her perky sunny nature with ersatz gravitas? Plain ol’ sexism? (Ain’t gonna believe nothin’ lessin’ a man says it.)
Or perhaps the entire concept of the evening news, with Chet or Uncle Walt or Waco Dan handing down the stone tablets is a relic of the days when news was something they worked on all day while the soaps were going on, and delivered to us while we digested the pot roast. Last time I watched evening news with any regularity was in the early 90s, while working in DC – it seemed like an in-house channel, and told you how the rest of the country was hearing what you and your clever friends were talking about at lunch. But even then the model was fraying, thanks to CNN and Headline News.
Any hope for evening news, or will it be sitting around a bar with Newspapers in ten years, talking about the good old days? Any favorite anchors? For some reason I have fond memories of Frank Smith, partly because he was on the also-ran network of the day, ABC, and partly because he seemed grim and somewhat bitter about things. But we were an NBC family, possibly because my dad liked to laugh at Irving R. Levine. The combination of the nasal deadpan and the jaunty red bow tie struck him as deeply amusing.Published in