Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Katie Couric: After months of speculation, the word's out that she's ready to jump to CBS.
Couric is earning $15 million to $16 million a year under the contract she signed in 2001 and CBS is expected to exceed that. The domino effect of her decision will clearly impact all three networks.
It makes me wonder whether this is the last time an anchor will grab that kind of dough. The demographic trends have shown network news sinking for years now, especially in the (caution, overused media f*ckwad jargon ahead) "coveted 18-35 age group." The nearly simultaneous retirement of Brokaw, death of Jennings, and self-immolation of Rather, it seems to me, suggests an unusual caesura, one in which the networks might reconsider the wisdom of high-priced anchors presiding over slipping ratings. Why not hire Greg Peterson from KMTV in Omaha, to pull an affiliate out of the hat. I bet he'd do it for 250 thousand plus liberal car service privileges. The marginal loss is likely to be small, anyway. It's not like nobody will watch CBS if they put on someone who is not Katie Couric. And honestly, to poach another overused term, Katie's got no gravitas.
"She was on the air when 9/11 happened. And she brings a huge base of the same kind of people who watch evening news."
The kind in Depends.

1 comment:

Razor said...

When the rumors began swirling, oh a year ago or so, I first thought it was a joke or a plant by her agent to gain some leverage with NBC.

Then, no one was either laughing at the concept or denying it. I still couldn't believe a morning host, who drove her cutesie vibe all the way to the bank would be put into Cronkite's seat (nearly literally).

I don't know that we demand that an anchor pretend to know it all like we used to, but going from Pentagon correspondent to Bryant Gumble's sidekick does not a resume make.

This moves shows the desperation of network news, not the innovation. Kind of like the Bush admin shuffling the deckchairs rather than addressing the gaping hole in the hull...