WELL, AT least we’re learning that NBC’s honchos knew that style was also at issue in their flailing ratings challenge, because Jon Stewart would have brought something to Sunday that no one else does. One big part of it is his irreverent indifference to the establishment political power structure that every single Sunday host still clings to.
The reporting comes from New York Magazine.
This Sunday marks Chuck Todd’s one-month anniversary in the anchor chair at Meet the Press. Despite an opening-week ratings spike from his exclusive sit-down interview with President Obama, the Todd-helmed show has settled back into third place behind ABC’s This Week and CBS’s Face the Nation. This has been frustrating to NBC News executives, who at one point had considered going in a radically different direction with the show. […]
…One source explained that NBC was prepared to offer Stewart virtually “anything” to bring him over. “They were ready to back the Brink’s truck up,” the source said. A spokesperson for NBC declined to comment. James Dixon, Stewart’s agent, did not respond to multiple requests for comment.
Chuck Todd’s response came via Twitter.
If it's Sunday, it's your moment of zen.
— Chuck Todd (@chucktodd) October 8, 2014
All of the Sunday political shows suffer from earnestness fatigue.
With 30% of the American public sick of both Democrats and Republicans, but especially Congress, to watch the surreal march of the pundits and listen to continual talking points is just too much.
None of the political Sunday shows give any sign that they understand the pace of news today that new generations are viewing. The plodding segments, the talking head format, the boring graphics and stale presentation.
Who wants to give up their Sunday morning for this?
Jon Stewart’s “The Daily Show” is the right tempo, but also takes our politicians for what they are: privileged people with an outrageous sense of entitlement and an overwhelming detachment from the lives of most of us. Stewart also manages, along with his crack writers and the people who help him deliver the news, to craft the stories of our lives, while not being afraid to get in people’s faces and say what’s right and wrong, as he sees it.
Journalism is critical, but in this day and age the public craves sages, people like Jon Stewart, John Oliver, Stephen Colbert. Insightful satirists who have the wit to make fun of our political system and the people who don’t have the guts to change it. But also point fingers at “fair and balanced” story lines that amount to giving credence to ideas that are dumb.
A newcomer to the scene, “With All Due Respect” on Bloomberg, reveals the type of pace Sunday shows should consider. Mark Halperin is no Jon Stewart, and John Heilemann isn’t Oliver or Colbert, but Bloomberg obviously knows the nature and pace of how people live today, especially millennials.
That’s something you cannot say about Face the Nation, This Week, or Meet the Press, and the new NBC set won’t fix what ails the venerable show. They’re all still stuck in the 20th century.
The only one who can still pull that schtick off is Charlie Rose.
There’s just nothing that happens on the political Sunday shows that I can’t catch on the web later. It’s the same for Jon Stewart, except you really never know what he’s going to say or who he’s going to piss off next and you don’t want to be the last to know.
The old Sunday show viewers aren’t ready for that, which is the catch-22 producers find themselves facing today.
What kind of audience are they looking to attract, last century’s or this one?