Sometimes the conclusions you arrive at are surprising. It’s nice when it happens; the world and its manifold data have should never lose the ability to astonish, etc. Thus it is that while aesthetically, the networks’ nightly newscasts strike me as an incredibly quaint ritual, there remain many arguments against unemploying Katie, Charles and Brian, which I outline in this week’s column.
I guess I should have known all along that my instincts regarding the evening news were off to begin with, since I was convinced Katie Couric would destroy the competition as soon as she took Dan Rather’s chair. My theory was: The anchor’s role is (let’s call it what it is) strictly performative, and Couric’s TV skills are about the best in the business. I stand by both ends of this theory. I also badly misjudged what audience expectations of an evening newscast are, and who is in that audience to begin with. Anyway, more about that. and more on this overall, can be found in the column.