Tuesday, September 14, 2004

Syndie's fall season

So far so bad.

I'm watching Tony Danza right now and although Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York, looks fantastic, the show is a train wreck. I was grateful when it was interrupted by an emergency alert.

Jane Pauley seems equally uncomfortable in the talk show setting. Anchors operating without teleprompters and with live audiences are usually bad combinations. And so far the show seems largely a cross-promotion for NBC. Yesterday's episode was about the hiker that had to cut his arm off when he got trapped under a boulder in Moab. It's an unbelievable story -- and I do mean unbelievable -- but the Pauley segment was basically a complete repeat of Dateline's Friday night story. Not to mention that he also appeared on the Today Show that morning. I understand cross-promotion and I understand book tours, but I think the whole thing gets a little out of hand.

In fact, the syndie field was weak enough this year that Denver's NBC affiliate opted instead to do its own local show, Colorado & Co. I have to applaud doing anything local, since stations rarely do anything local these days besides news, but the two hosts are too perky for 10 am. Or for any time of day really.

OK, at the moment I'm watching Maury because it's on in Denver after Danza. Today's segment is on "I'm 13, and I'll do anything to have a baby," so it's about 13-year-olds who are supposedly having sex many times a day to get pregnant. The girls so far are both very overweight and their mothers are on the show crying. This can't be real. How is this even on TV? I cover daytime TV and even I am shocked.

And at the end of it all, Oprah, the queen of talk, still prevails. Hey, you give away 277 cars, you win. I think that's the rule, anyway.

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