Corsicana Daily Sun, Corsicana, Texas


August 2, 2013

‘Vast wasteland’ revisited

Daytime TV offerings sadly lacking

It was 1961 when then-Federal Communications Commission Chairman Newton Minnow declared that television was “a vast wasteland.”

From my personal observation of the “tube” after a couple of days of channel surfing this week, I’d suggest we can “renew” Minnow’s comments - at least in regards to daytime television.

Admittedly, I’m not what you’d probably classify as an “average” viewer. Generally, if I have the TV on during the day, it’s to follow the news or monitor the weather - not to be “entertained.”

And, based on the present offerings I observed “across the dial” this week (there are no more “dials,” of course - my age is showing again) it’s a good thing I wasn’t expecting to be “entertained” - because it wasn’t going to happen.

It seems that virtually anyone can get a talk show again. (I recall a similar cycle a couple of decades ago.) Watching some of them, though, is like watching a fish flopping around on the deck of a boat, eyes bugging out, gasping for air and waiting to be thrown back in. But enough about Kris Kardashian …

And a couple of old standbys are still cranking out a daily show - and that’s just sad. I “get” that there’s probably some kind of audience for Jerry Springer - it’s primarily because the audience and the guests are generally interchangeable. But Connie Chung needs to take Maury Povich on a long cruise or something. I think even the younger viewers are no longer impressed with “faux-dramatic DNA ’who’s the daddy’ reveals” anymore that seem to be Maury’s “go to” topic. Maury, that might have been interesting several decades ago when technology and traditions were different. Today, well, not so much …

Even my “go-to” programming of choice - the news channels -  can be hard to predict. Sometimes you don’t know if you are going to find an actual newscast or a so-called panel of experts picking apart every syllable of every word spoken by someone. And, yes, even those “we report, you decide” folks are guilty of that one.

There may be folks out there who need to have someone explain to them what they’ve just heard - but I’m not one of them. I’d rather make up my own mind about how I feel about something, thank you - not be told how I should feel. But apparently that approach “sells” - so more power to them, I suppose.

Text Only
  • Dr Don Newbury 2014.jpg Old, new, borrowed, blue

       Dissection of notes found in the pocket of an old suit isn’t easy. Maybe they were scrawled during the lull in a wedding ceremony, or to jog my memory of a joke for later use.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Dick Platt 2014.jpg Spam french fries

    I saw a relatively disturbing video and article on Yahoo which touted making Spam French fires to go alongside your big old ground chuck burger. I just can’t imagine a basket full of these deep-fried cholesterol-loaded sticks, but there they were, bigger than Texas.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Janet Jacobs Dumb and dumber in the blotter

    When it comes to dumb criminals, nothing beats the would-be gang of car burglars who tried to break into a car in Tampa, Florida, this past week.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Belcher, Bob.jpg ‘Change’ — old "buzz word" shows up in our town

    If you pay much attention when you’re driving around town lately (and I really hope that you do — pay attention, that is) you can’t help but admit we’ve seen some “change” as of late. And, contrary to the political connotations that word will forever carry with it now, that “change” we’re seeing is good.

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Bill Tinsley Germany present and past

    Last Sunday evening my wife and I stood on the balcony of our apartment in Nuremberg and watched as fireworks lit up the sky.

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Dr Don Newbury 2014.jpg Where strawberries are king

    In 1949, when Stilwell, Oklahoma’s “Strawberry Festival” was just one year old, crooners were applauded when they cut loose with Dear Hearts and Gentle People.

    July 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Dick Platt 2014.jpg My TV is held hostage

    Give me back my TV! The Sunday sports fare today is just pitiful as far as I am concerned. Over the past weeks, my normal sports programs has been rudely preempted by endless hours of Wimbledon tennis, the Tour de France, assorted motor sports, and the nauseating mega-million signing sagas of LeBron James and Carmello Anthony

    July 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • Janet Jacobs Thoughts from abroad

    So, with the generosity of Mastercard and warm encouragement of my friends who went with me, I went to Italy on vacation. Not Italy, Texas, the one in Europe.

    July 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • deannakirk.jpg For a community that’s hurting

    I think all would agree that our community is hurting right now.
    It seems like some weeks, our quota of tragedy and loss just goes through the roof. This is one of those weeks.

    July 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • Bill Tinsley An inspiring life

    Last week, while Americans prepared their fireworks for the fourth of July, Louis Zamparini quietly slipped the bonds of this earth at the age of 97.

    July 10, 2014 1 Photo

AP Video
Raw: Gunmen Attack Iraqi Prison Convoy Plane Leaves Ukraine With More Crash Victims The Rock Brings Star Power to Premiere Raw: Families Travel to Taiwan Plane Crash Site Arizona Execution Takes Almost Two Hours Gen. Odierno Discusses Ukraine, NATO at Forum Gaza Fighting Rages Amid Cease-Fire Efforts Mint Gives JFK Coin a Face-lift Creative Makeovers for Ugly Cellphone Towers Ariz. Inmate Dies 2 Hours After Execution Began Crash Kills Teen Pilot Seeking World Record LeBron James Sends Apology Treat to Neighbors Raw: Funeral for Man Who Died in NYPD Custody Migrants Back in Honduras After US Deports Israeli American Reservist Torn Over Return
Featured Ads
Twitter Updates