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Arts and Culture

Katie Couric Is Ready for Her Close-Up

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Posted on Oct 1, 2008
cbsnews.com

It’s been a rough couple of years for the anchor of the last-place network newscast, but Katie Couric managed to silence many of her critics this week with an interview series that not only got a lot of attention, but scored points for her tough but fair style.

What might be dismissed as gotcha journalism by some sounded like follow-up questions to others. Couric managed to expose Palin as a neophyte without drawing a peep of criticism from the McCain campaign. That’s really saying something, since Steve Schmidt and friends have managed to find fault with just about everyone, tough, fair or otherwise.

It turns out that Couric’s broadcast actually lost viewers compared with the previous year but, as The New York Times reports, between the YouTube clips, the highlights on other networks and the “Saturday Night Live” semi-parody, Couric got plenty of attention this week, and she probably deserved it.


New York Times:

The first interview last Wednesday, for example, has been viewed more than 1.4 million times on YouTube, while the parody of the interview on “SNL” was streamed more than 4 million times on NBC.com, viewed in full more than 600,000 times on YouTube and in shorter clips many more hundreds of thousands of times.

Still, the “CBS Evening News” gained only about 10 percent in audience from the previous week—and it was actually down from the same week the year before. The newscast averaged just under 6 million viewers for the week, up from 5.44 million the previous week. A year ago Ms. Couric’s program drew about 6.2 million viewers. (CBS was also a distant third last week behind ABC, which won with 8.07 million viewers, and NBC, with 7.98 million.)

The CBS newscast didn’t even record its highest audience totals last Wednesday and Thursday, when the interviews were broadcast. Monday was the network’s best-rated night of the week.

But the week was still considered, by executives from both CBS and its rivals, to be among the best Ms. Couric has experienced since she joined the newscast two years ago. Jon Klein, the president of CNN’s domestic operations, said, “It was brand-building for a woman who is still one of the very best journalists out there.”

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By Marnie, October 4, 2008 at 6:29 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

It may very well be that Katie, like most women who think of themselves as intelligent, fully functional persons, doesn’t appreciate vacuous women who get ahead on sex appeal, smiles and giggles, and cute nonthreatening ditzy headed monologues, easily ignored by superior males.

The Repulsivecons, made much of American women not supporting Monica.  That’s because women realize that the Palin Lewinski types perpetuate a male stereotype of women as pretty objects to please men, decorative and available, when desired, but not respected or listened to.

Since much of Katie’s professional success has been as a smiling, giggly, cutie, maybe she decided to grownup for her interview with Palin.

Its not like she asked deeply probing meaty questions but she sensed weakpoints, brought them to light and, to her credit, followed up where answers were weak or nonexistant.

Speaking of growing up.  How long til Palin reasizes that she is being used by McCain?
Right now, she is blaming everyone but McCain for her discomfort. 
The next interview needs to probe that point.  She was chosen as a sexy piece to stand next to McCain and make him easier to look at, and as an airhead, to stand next to McCain and make him look more coherent.

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By bipolar2, October 4, 2008 at 10:08 am Link to this comment

** Sarah Non-Sequitur pouts, “Katie’s not my friend any more!” **

Sarah Non-Sequitur demands her god-given right to be logically incoherent without any assistance.

Palin is Peter Pan, a never-grow-up tomboy. How else to characterize a mental and behavioral juvenile who opines that human beings and dinosaurs walked together in a world at most 6,000 years old.

Abandon rationality and honesty if you would be one with her in fundie-land.

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By Nathayan, October 3, 2008 at 10:09 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The master McCain and the student Sarah Palin defeated.

Sarah tried hardly to memorize the notes transcribed for her by her republican coach. But the machine did not work well, as expected. The score of the game for two seasons of debates comes down to two - zero, for Obama / Biden. Two more remaining rounds!

Sarah must understand that talking without saying anything is not good strategy to win a debate or even an election.

Playing a comedy, humor and the emotional can never save McCain. Everyone has his humor and his different background to share. Sarah must, like Biden, know how to give answers, answers, answers and answers, and again knowing to respond short and with precision and intelligence.

Against Joe Biden, Sarah did not respond to any question, as in her failed interviews before the debate. Sarah Palin use to make rhetoric but empty of substance, structure and coherence.

Politics is about knowledge of issues and never about the emotional and empty words. The McCain bracelet and “a mother in the kitchen around the table with her kids! Wow. Obama has also a bracelet. Biden also knows how to raise kids without a mother. You see, that emotional arrow doesn’t work!

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By GW=MCHammered, October 1, 2008 at 9:38 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Katie stopped being CBS and started being Katie. Her questions and expressions were honest in reflecting her intuition, intellect and experience. Go Katie!

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By JimM, October 1, 2008 at 6:35 pm Link to this comment

Joe does not have to do a darned thing in tomorrow’s debate, just be as quiet as possible.
Sarah is such a total asshole that she will do a great job displaying this all by herself.

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By Christopher, October 1, 2008 at 3:09 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Speaking of slugs: Palin handled a true slug, Sean Hannity, quite well. I guess Hannity isn’t the interviewer he thinks he is—Couric cracked Palin where Hannity could not.

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By Inherit The Wind, October 1, 2008 at 2:01 pm Link to this comment

Years ago, before they made Couric blonde and sexy, she had short, mousy brown hair and ugly bangs.  She dressed frumpy, but was a damn good reporter.

They’ve hyped her and prettied her—and stifled her.

But last week Katie hit a game-ending grand-slam with her Palin interviews.  The McCain figured it’d be coffee-klatsch Katie, talking kids and cookies.  But it was anything but!  Couric didn’t play “gotcha” journalism. (But let’s remember that there’s “gotcha” journalism and what the GOP calls “gotcha” journalism, which means the reporter asked a question for which the candidate didn’t know the answer—and looked stupid!).

I think, if Obama wins, this may well be the turning point.

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By Nathayan, October 1, 2008 at 11:28 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

It’s about the destiny of the American People.
Not about the love of our political Parties.
Sarah Palin is so empty in knowledge for being Vice-President in the United States.

McCain is too old. He gonna die soon. Sarah who doesn’t understand a lot about the needs of the American people and the foreign policy is not ready to lead.

McCain did a huge mistake by choosing Sarah Palin. He needs to be honest and admit that fact. The whole world abroad has a big hate of the American people according to failed policies of the Bush administration.

Inside the country, we are suffering as people from a poor country. Abroad, we are killed for the failed policies from the Bush administration.

We need a new kind of leadership to correct those mistakes. I’m republican but I think that only Obama is prepared to do what is good for the American People. I’m a honest Christian and I think that McCain and Sarah are not ready for that.

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By Tawny Jones, October 1, 2008 at 3:12 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Sarah Palin can be forgiven anything except for resurrecting that pasty-faced zombie Katie Couric from her rightful place in the formaldehyde jar. Please, she was gone and forgotten, but now she is b-a-a-a-a-c-k. No way Sarah will ever “shake things up in Washington”, if she couldn’t make short work of slugs like Couric and Gibson.

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