Monday, January 14, 2019

2038 Megyn as Metaphor

Megyn Kelly has left the building.  She carries with her a $30 million goodbye offering -- what she would have been paid between now and the end of her contract -- and a promise not to badmouth NBC.  Some people hope her story is a metaphor for a larger and more important and hoped for event, a reversion to form of the American Republican Party.

Kelly was on the low end of Fox’s template.  A little less leg and a little less hysteria than, say, Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity, Jeanine Pirro and the virulent Laura Ingraham.  But she was a Fox soldier through and through. Until all that nasty sexual predator stuff came to light.

Her big boost into the big time was when trump tore into her during a presidential debate.  From there, her future seemed bright and shiny.

NBC evidently thought the same, hired her away and then tried to figure out what to do with her.  What they came up with didn’t work: a weekly talk show and a daily hour of her own on the then-faltering “Today Show.”

The talk show bombed and was canceled.  The ratings in the third hour of Today tanked. And Megyn kept putting her foot into her mouth.  Plus few on the inside beyond the executive suite were willing to help her succeed.  A personality needs the writers, producers, directors, production assistants, technicians, and lighting, sound, makeup and hair people.  There was no support from “the help.”

NBC brass finally decided there was no room at the table for Kelly and ditched her.  Since then, the ratings have risen to what is “normal” for an hour of The Today Show.

What those geniuses at 30 Rock failed to realize was that there’s a big difference between viewers of Fox and their own steady but dull outfit.  

Here’s the hope:

Fox viewer types are running today’s Republican Party.  The present president is a prime example.  A looney toon in a bad suit who rules by fear and chaos.  Neither “quality” is appealing to your run of the mill Republican.  And as the 2018 election showed, the party’s ratings are circling the drain.

What needs to happen is a resurgence of true Republican principles: Smaller government, social programs that work, judges and justices that put law over party, reasonable taxation for all and respect for accomplishment over rhetoric.

It would be good to think that among the viewers of the Republican Party there are more like the NBC than the Fox viewers.  Or is that merely wishful thinking and the GOP really is nothing more than a ‘48 Dodge on blocks in the front yard.

As for Kelly … well, like the public relations people might say, we thank her for her effort and wish her best of luck at her next assignment. (At one of the shopping channels or the host of the Lee PressOn Nails infomercial. Or maybe Copper Chef.)

I’m Wes Richards. My opinions are my own but you’re welcome to them.
© WJR 2019

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