Today’s horrible idea comes courtesy of the floundering CNN, which hopes it can stage a ratings comeback by recycling a failed idea from the past. That’s right, CNN is supposedly bringing back the awful Crossfire this summer:
After the failed week long experiment of (Get To) The Point and the unsteady The Lead With Jake Tapper, Jeff Zucker is looking for a blast from the past to revive CNN. The ratings-struggling cable new network is bringing back Crossfire in June, network insiders tell me. No hosts have been chosen yet, the sources say. Nor is it clear if the show will definitely remain a half hour, as the original Crossfire was, or go longer. Right now it seems that Crossfire 2.0 is slated to have a variety of CNN personalities and contributors taking up the “left” and “right” roles on the new version of the political debate show. A CNN standard almost from the begining, Crossfire ran on the network in both daytime and primetime from 1982 until it was cancelled in 2005. Crossfire isn’t the first piece of CNN history Zucker has brought back since taking over in January. The former Today show producer reinstalled James Earl Jones’ traditional “This is CNN” promo voiceover in his first week in his new gig.
Oh, I know! Let’s get another one of those egofests where right and left shout talking points over one other, said nobody, ever. Jesus, but this is a terrible idea. Hey CNN, if you want to bring something back from the past, how about Style With Elsa Klensch? I adored that show, it was my Saturday morning staple. Elsa always asked the same three questions: “What colors are you using,” “What fabrics are you using,” and, “What about prints?” Really, if you’re doing fashion journalism, that’s all anyone needs to know.
Oh, CNN. Let’s go back to the day Jon Stewart stuck a pin in the Crossfire balloon and told Tucker Carlson and Paul Begala to stop hurting America. Neither Carlson nor Begala seemed to understand the different roles CNN and Comedy Central play; neither Crossfire host seemed to get that Stewart is an entertainer doing an entertainment show on an entertainment network, while they were supposed to be newsmen doing a news show on a news network. Stewart said the concept of Crossfire was a good one, but the execution was hurting American discourse. Crossfire got cancelled but CNN continued on its march toward absurd infotainment. I don’t harbor much hope that Crossfire 2.0 would be any better than it was the first time around.