Could this be the future of local news? The website TVNewsCheck.com reports that Tribune Broadcasting is looking at the prototype of an anchorless newscast that sounds more like a Jon Stewart video mashup than something you'd actually watch to get the news:
In one story, the narrator refers to terrorists as "bozos." In another, a clip of fictional boxer Ivan Drago from Rocky IV is mixed into a story about the West getting tough with Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. There are even clips from cartoon shows like Ren and Stimpyand animations from the JibJab website
Before you get too excited -- or enraged -- you need to know that the guy behind this is Lee Abrams, Tribune's "chief innovation officer,'' who has zero background in either television or journalism. He's a radio guy who thinks TV news can be reinvented as a morning-zoo show. His last big project was the dizzying Morning Show that WSFL-CW 39 canceled last week because nobody was watching it.
"I can tell we have the makings of a winner that can be influential at our other stations," Abrams told his staffers in a memo when The Morning Showdebuted 16 months ago. "This show is SO south Florida, you can't simply recreate it, but it CAN serve as a model of breaking away, blowing up the playbook, creating a wonderful internal vibe (more like a killer radio station in 1975 than a TV station), and AFDI. [AFDI is hip radio-speak for Actually Fornicating Do It]. I'm impressed and excited about where this can go. In a year...look out!" As in, the anvil is heading for your skull.