Hogan's Alley

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Meredith Vieira To Replace Couric On Today

According to the Times reporter, Jacques Steinberg, Katie Couric will be signed by CBS to become the anchor for their evening newscast. Bob Sheiffer, who made the CBS program watchable will apparently be kicked back to the corner of the Sunday morning Face the Nation show.

By Labor Day, Couric will be replaced on Today by Meredith Vieira, currently of The View and Who Wants To Be A Millionare's daytime franchise.

Let's hope that Campbell Brown, cohost of the weekend Today show, who is currently on her honeymoon following her wedding last weekend, is somewhere very remote, like Pago Pago, and has taken a vow with her newsman husband to forswear newscasts and papers for the duration. Surely she must have harbored some hope of ascending to Couric's throne.

For me the departure of Couric and her horrible interviewing skills will be a welcome change. All she does is to read the staff-prepared questions, barely listening to the guest's response, and rush on to squeeze all the questions into the miniscule allotted time. The only time she seems to genuinely engage with a guest is when they are a regular joe with a sad story to tell. Then, even when they are accompanied by their lawyer and are publicizing a lawsuit, she becomes all empathy and credulity. No tough followup questions then.

Vieira seems a nice and intelligent person from the few times I've seen her shows. Of course, anyone can quickly wear out their welcome when they magically appear in your bedroom five days a week for two hours. And there is always Imus as an antidote to the treacle often served up on the network morning shows.