September 11, 2001. It's 10:15 am and the South Tower just went down. Millions of French people are watching the live coverage of the events on TF1, France's major TV channel, with star anchorman Poivre d'Arvor doing a running commentary. Then, for a split second, a character from a famous movie happily tells us (in French subtitles) that he "did it" (18 s in the video) (Dailymotion video). [more inside]
The Emmy nominations are out and the news nominations go to the biggest story, September 11. No surprises there. PBS has 41 nominations and Fox has 0. No surprises there either. Does this say something about the news industry and it's ability to discern serious news from chaff? Is Bill Moyers a national treasure? Do you think perhaps Murdoch should rethink the direction of his media empire?
When I think WTC attacks, I think...SITCOM? Uhhh, CBS, uhhh...hmmm...anyone?
Will Durst: "ABC has its blue circled logo in the bottom right with red-and-white stripes shooting offscreen, and CBS has a motto: 'America on Alert.' Not all of the cable stations have official mottos but that's why I'm here. To help."
What did you think of West Wing last night? Beyond the fact that it was preachy and simplistic, did you think that it was a good or bad approach to handling complex issues through a show that is respected for presenting political dialogues in a pop culture format? Additionally, what do you think of the way in which pop culture seems to have returned to normal? This topic appears in both the NY Times and USA Today, today, as it becomes clear that prime time ratings are stronger than ever after the attacks.
Praise be to David Letterman for tonight's Late Show. Questioning himself the appropriateness of returning to the air, there he was--the man famed for his sarcasm and goofy antics--addressing his audience like a wounded child, completely bewildered, emotional, fighting back tears. And then the sight of Dan Rather sobbing despite himself and then apologzing---it was enough to ravage any audience. Perhaps, for the first time in a while, television didn't appeal to our lowest common demoninator but, instead, sought to raise us up and appeal to our humanity. Thanks Dave.
Another probable victim of the attack was Angel, the winner of FOX's "Murder in Small Town X" reality show. He's a NY firefighter.
Where are these people's priorities? CBS has done it again. "Many people can't get enough news about the terrorist attacks in the United States, but a few are getting absolutely none: those locked up in ``Big Brother'' houses. " Apologies if this has already been posted, search didn't return anything useful.
The entertainment industry reacts. Fox's "24" delayed. "Spider-Man" twin towers scene removed. Ah-nold's "Collateral Damaged" and Tim Allen's "Big Trouble" postponed indefinitely, TV skyline shots being re-edited, televised action movies being replaced with more humor and upbeat programming. How long will it last? And having been probed for so long, will the gaming industry do anything in turn?
"I've been a broadcast journalist for a quarter of a century and I've never seen a slower period ... There is really no comparison in our lifetime." Are we facing The End of News? Will we ever again live in interesting times? (Yes, I know it's a Salon link. But I've been thinking about this for a while.)