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Monday, April 2, 2012

CNN News Programming Grades as of 4/2/12

These are my grades of the weekday programming on CNN, the network I go to for news.

Erin Burnett OutFront-98%(A+)
CNN Newsroom-97%(A)
The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer-95%(A)
Anderson Cooper 360-91%(A-)
John King USA-90%(A-)
Piers Morgan Tonight-84%(B)
Starting Point-81%(B-)
Early Start-51%(F)

My notes on the grading of the 8 shows.

1. Haven't watched OutFront lately, so I can't really judge. Haven't heard anything negatory, so the grade stays the same as last week.

2. Let's drop the cloak of impartiality right now. I only watch for Brooke, end of story, and I grade the series based on what I see in those two hours. The big story this past week has been her interview with Representative Corrine Brown(D-FL). Brooke really nailed her when she asked her the name of the white girl who was murdered, but to Brown's credit, she did tweet Brooke the name of the girl later on(I follow Brooke on Twitter. She follows me as well.). That said, not all that watch Newsroom follow either of them. It's all a matter a perception and mindset. I'm so glad that most people side with Brooke on this one, but it gives me a great deal of heartburn to think that there's a small, but vocal, crowd who is hating her for doing what no one else is doing, and that is reporting the facts, regardless of what may come next. That's real journalism, and I praise her.

3. This show continues to reign as the top political heavy show on CNN, but Wolf "We will watch OutFront, just as we do every...single...night" Blitzer still hits those potholes which arise from trying to be modern instead of trying to be the Jennings-style reporter that he is.

4. I haven't watched lately. Nothing bad has been said, so the grade stays the same.

5. "John King USA" is a good show, but continues to be a ratings drag. It's fallen behind OutFront, who's ratings are on the upswing, in the key demographic as of late. Maybe CNN should give him a White House job and give Kate Bolduan the time slot? Would help the ratings a good bit. Must also note that his substitute today, Jessica Yellin, has improved a lot. Maybe it's that JKUSA is easier to carry than "The Situation Room," or maybe she's just an acquired taste much in the way Tom "Goofy" Foreman is.

6. Improved by a good clip. Decent interviews with the likes of Lionel Richie(who's music I'm no fan of) and Rick Santorum. He and Erin Burnett will be there a long time.

7. Easily better than "Early Start," but this time slot's at its worst ratings since before 9/11. Will last longer that "Early Start," but, if they don't turn the ship around soon, maybe not by much.

8. That time slot's at its worst ratings since before 9/11. Need I say more? Never thought I'd say this, but I'm thinking I prefer Banfield to Sambolin. Banfield can play reporter, as evidenced by today's CNN Newsroom, while Sambolin's just another one of those MSNBC mentality ambush reporters. The show will not last long, IMO.

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