Tuesday, September 05, 2006

It's Katie time

A little rough off the line, I'd say. She sounds hoarse and looks a little tired. Maybe she has a cold. I do.

In terms of changes, she's promising a talk-back segment, with a promo from Morgan Spurlock, and the news portion kicks off with a long, meaty story on the resurgence of the Taliban.

Next we get an analysis on the President's speech today, rather than a straight news story on it, followed by a sitdown with Thomas Friedman of the New York Times. Probably not mollifying Rather critics with that one-two.

Katie is better in the interview setting, which was always her strength on "Today."

Short bit on Bill Ford stepping down at Ford, then a quickie on Steve Irwin's death.

Next, "Eye On Your Money," with a look at a new oil field in the Gulf of Mexico. The story has far more information on Katrina than it does on the new field, or what it could mean for consumers or energy independence. Annoying, re-hashing Katrina in a "news" story.

The segment is called "freeSpeech." Spurlock is just the first commentator. He rants about TV pundits - "We're not a nation divided at all. We've just bought into the hype." Blah, blah: Talking about having a civil discourse instead of actually having one.

Katie says Rush Limbaugh will be doing it on Thursday. That might be interesting.

Next up "snapshots," with ancient photos of Prince Charles? Nope, it's an intro into photos of Suri Cruise. Tabloid crap. I. Don't. Care. About. Celebrity. Babies. Ever.

Next, a feature story on a Nicarauguan orphanage and an American artist painting portraits of the children. Weird kind of outreach: They'd probably prefer an X-Box. The reporter portrays it as an awareness thing. Eh.

"All summer long, people have been asking me, 'How will you sign off at the end of your newscast?' I've been wracking my brain and nothing has won out." Instead, she goes to a montage of past anchors' sign-offs (including Will Ferrell's Ron Burgundy). She invites viewers to write in with their ideas.

So, based on this sampling of one program, Couric is trying to make the newscast more viewer-friendly, interactive, and human. I finished the half-hour marginally more knowledgable, if not dancing on the edge of my seat.

Couric made it pretty clear when she was in Denver this summer that she didn't plan to re-invent the wheel or rock the boat much. More like changing the color of the sails. So I'm not blown away or majorly disappointed. I'd watch the freeSpeech feature again if it's somebody interesting. The oil rig story was a big missed opportunity to push a story forward, however.

She sounds better, livelier and sharper in the interview with Don and Shannon on the KKTV interview during KK's 5:30.


At 6:40 PM, September 05, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

again for this blog.. ill stick with paula zahn.. or brian williams there.. andyw..also there is ..andy cooper of cnn. if i can ill watch or video tape it but i dont watch news anymore, it sucks..i wonder why does koaatv-5/30 doesnt get into pueblo for the mda telethon ?? i know that this is old story but why does the people in pueblo has to come to the double tree hotel ..all the way the way from..lajunta or pueblo or canon city.. thats a good 60-70 miles one way??huh for a BIG TV station like koaa tv.. cmon..must be pinching pennies and dimes there.. thats something there..have a great time at kvuu there ,andy w..

At 7:42 PM, September 05, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have a sign off for Katie: Edward R. Morrow is rolling in his grave.

Sheesh. If I wanted celebrity baby news, I'd watch Entertainment Tonight!

I'm not impressed. I'll stick with Brian Williams.

At 8:24 PM, September 05, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i totally agree.. i remember when mr williams was with tom brokaw at the elections..and he was only at one room reporting the results..now he in new orleans .. every where ..with president bush..nah.. ill go with the proven thing .. a good book. turn off the the comcast in i have to pay for 70 bucks a month..for nothing.just fox news and msnbc..i do miss liz vargus of abc instead of charles gibson..though.. but i think that paula zahn ..would have been better..anchor, but time will tell with ms katie..i didnt like it when was on today but i might be wrong but a good book or blogging would be nice..


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