Over the last three months, you probably have learned or relearned that I am a pretty opinionated guy.
You don’t always like the opinions, but here goes almost 20 of them.
• Channel 4 recently begin running promos that say it is “holding the powerful accountable.” If it seems a little familiar, it is because Channel 2 has been running promos for years saying “it is holding people in power accountable.” It makes you wonder why Channel 7 doesn’t just tweak the promo by saying it is “holding powerful people accountable.” After all, people who “borrow” promo phrases apparently don’t have to be accountable.
• I don’t think anyone has done a better job recovering from initial impressions on TV than Channel 4 reporter Rachel Kingston. She always has been a solid reporter, but viewers found her appearance distracting when she first moved from radio to TV. Now she looks very professional on the air and has grown so much that I wouldn’t be surprised if she moved to a bigger market if that’s what she wants.
• I didn’t realize how popular Channel 2 meteorologist Andy Parker was until he went on family leave after his wife had a baby. I’ve received numerous emails inquiring about Parker’s whereabouts in the last few weeks. He is expected back Monday. With baby pictures, no doubt.
• I watched the local news at 11 p.m. on July Fourth and decided newscasts should be canceled on the holiday. After a tragic first story about two people drowning, local stations were scrambling to carry anything that happened locally newsworthy.
• I don’t recall hearing more grumbling about the local weather reports for the holiday since, well, since they blew the forecast on the last holiday. It may be easier to forecast how the Bills will do in July than it is to forecast the weather. At least the Bills have been consistent.
• I caught NBC’s “Today” last week to hear Natalie Morales’ take on the old Yahoo shareholder who told chief executive Marissa Mayer she was attractive before adding she was doing a good job. I think Morales said it is OK to be told you are attractive as long as the person doing so also addresses your qualifications. So I guess it is OK for a critic to see that Morales is attractive and does a good job reading the news on “Today.”
• I also caught Channel 2’s Heather Ly subbing for anchor Mary Friona on the 11 a.m. news last week and thought she was quite impressive. It also reminded me that there is no current weekday anchor on local TV who is a minority. That’s pretty sad. Channel 7 weekend anchor Kendra Eaglin actually is the only regular minority evening anchor in the market. There are only about a half dozen people of color on-air collectively at all three stations. What century are we in?
• I am not a wine expert, but I am impressed by the guest list that Kevin LoVullo gets for his Channel 2 program, “Spiel the Wine.” The list has included Francis Ford Coppola and Paul Hornung.
• I will be curious if I’m not the only one who thinks that Channel 7’s future morning anchor Tiffany Lundberg looks more than a little like Miley Cyrus. Before Miley went a little weird, that is. You’ll have to trust me until you see Lundberg make her debut next month.
•If you think I’m a bit unfair at times, consider this headline in a national media site after Lundberg was hired: “Jumping on the Titanic.” Ouch. Channel 7 has sunk pretty low, but it could recover in say 10-15 years.
• Kyla Igoe’s departure from Channel 7 is a little extra sad because the news business is in her blood. Her father, Mike Igoe, was a veteran Channel 2 reporter. The younger Igoe probably was quick to learn that TV reporters don’t get paid that much considering all the long hours and stress they have to deal with.
• If I were a betting man, former Channel 2 reporter Pete Gallivan would be voted the most likely to return to the business after a stint in public relations. He was the only TV person who left for a PR job that I interviewed for a recent story that seemed to miss TV.
• I miss Channel 2’s Sunday Sports Extra.
• When Channel 7 premieres its new morning co-anchors next month – Cole Heath and Lundberg – meteorologist Mike Randall will be older than both of them combined. But then again so am I.
• I was a fan of Adam Levine of “The Voice” and Maroon 5 even before a flattering piece on him recently ran on “CBS Sunday Morning.” I knew that “The Voice” was a great career move for Levine when my son-in-law told me he never heard of Levine before the singing series and now is a big Levine fan. I’ve heard the same thing from many other people. “American Idol” needs to find its own version of Levine to become relevant again.
• Cheektowaga’s William Fichtner probably isn’t a national household name, but he is one of the busiest actors in the business. Besides being in the current Lone Ranger film, Fichtner is co-starring in a NBC series currently running, “Crossing Lines.” Of course, the movie and the TV series may have been filmed a year or more ago.
• Speaking of Fichtner, every time I write about him I have to check how to spell his name. The same is true of Channel 7 sportscaster Jason Gruenauer. Of course, my last name isn’t that easy to spell, either, but somehow I manage it.
• Channel 2’s demographic decline for their 10 p.m. newscast after it moved from Channel 49 to Channel 29 just feeds into the conspiracy theorists who believe Nielsen ratings are a joke. I’m told that local stations everywhere wish Nielsen was made to be more accountable.