Bob Schieffer – CBS’s Best Anchor Since Cronkite

Bob SchiefferI’ve boasted enough to all the folks around the office, so I thought it was about time to lay it out to everyone… Bob Schieffer is one cool cat and one great news anchor. After the whole 24 years I started going to “sleep” watching Dan “Not the Man” Rather (he actually wasn’t that bad early on… but, he didn’t ripen well with age) it’s a blessing to watch CBS News’ replacement for Rather.

I guess it would help put this post in better context if I mentioned that I have a strong allegiance to CBS News. There’s no good reason behind it other than nostalgia (watching it every night at the dinner table as a kid) and having great respect for the outstanding news men that have tenured at CBS over the years — Edward R. Murrow, Walter Cronkite, Harry Reasoner, and the always enjoyable Mike Wallace (who is retiring from ’60 Minutes’ this year, which is a huge disappoint to me). But, I digress… Back to Schieffer…

CBS had to come up big after the “Rathergate” scandal last year. Finding a replacement to compete with the great anchors at the other networks, I’m sure, was no easy task. But, I hand it to CBS for taking the leap of faith and heading in a completely different direction, not only with “their” anchor, but in contrast to all the major network’s anchors, as a whole. Schieffer’s layman’s approach to presentation and point-blank questioning of his correspondents is a breath of fresh air.

If there’s a fire across the street,” Schieffer says, “you don’t walk into the newsroom and say, ‘A raging, three-alarm fire, whipped by 40-mile-an-hour winds, ripped through the home next door.’ You say, ‘There’s a fire across the street.'”

It would be easier for you to watch CBS News than for me to continue rambling about it, so I guess that’s the point of this post. Watch it. See what you think for yourself.

From the Washington Post — Schieffer has been enjoying a wave of positive publicity, not least because reporters who cover television are fixated on ratings. For the season to date, the “CBS Evening News” has gained 183,000 viewers, from what had been a low point under Rather. By contrast, ABC’s “World News Tonight,” which is still rebuilding after the death of Peter Jennings and the injuries suffered by Bob Woodruff in Iraq, has lost 845,000 viewers and “NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams” has lost 741,000.

At the same time, Williams remains the undisputed evening news leader, averaging 9.87 million viewers to 8.78 million for ABC and 7.66 million for Schieffer’s broadcast.

So, CBS still sits in last place in terms of the major network news ratings, but with Schieffer in the seat, more or more people are coming back to CBS News by the day. There has to be more to it than just what I see…

I, personally, hope the trend continues and that CBS’s claim of “temporary anchor” was nothing more than a misnomer. I expect if the ratings continue the way they have, it might just be just that.

Links:

Yahoo!
Washington Post

This entry was posted in People, Ramblings.

17 Comments

  1. Fattkidd March 21, 2006 at 5:03 pm #

    He’s only temporary. He never wanted to do it as long as he has. He was supposed to just fill in for a few months until they found a replacement. Last I read said CBS was trying to woo Katie Couric to be the anchor. So, enjoy it while it lasts.

  2. The Kid March 21, 2006 at 7:37 pm #

    I know it was only intended to be temporary. But, he gave a special “sign off” the other evening — when he reached the one year mark. He wanted the position and he honors it. He did say that it was difficult, considering he lives in D.C., but he hoped that he would be able to stay in the seat for some time to come. He also said he wished he got the job when he was a “bit” younger. HA! He also thanked everyone for their support (e.g. ratings) and that he wouldn’t be there right now if it weren’t for them. I think CBS is probably surprised by all the interest.

    Yeah, I know about the Couric thing. That would be a good way to send the whole thing into the toilet! (in my opinion). A lot of other news sources have asked Bob about the Couric thing, but he never comments.

    Yeah, I know. . . it’s all getting prepped with young, fresh faces. Faces that can become the new foundation of CBS News. And, I guess that has to happen. It’s business.

    But, I’ll enjoy Bob while he lasts!

  3. Jonathan March 21, 2006 at 8:31 pm #

    You guys sure do have a lot of time on your hands to be able to watch “prime time” news. I’m still working at that hour! What gives?

  4. Fattkidd March 23, 2006 at 3:17 pm #

    Suck to be Jonny. Get a REAL job why don’t you!!!???

    I think they should replace all of the anchors with MAX HEADROOM!!!! Now THAT would be sweet. I’d watch that!

    How about a discussion about how the media is losing the war in Iraq? It’s all Bob Schieffer’s fault you know.

  5. The Kid March 23, 2006 at 6:57 pm #

    >>…have a lot of time on your hands to be able to watch “prime time” news.

    Umm. It’s called the “Evening News” — and that’s because it’s on in the friggin’ evening — e.g. after you get off work.

    >>How about a discussion about how the media is losing the war in Iraq? It’s all Bob Schieffer’s fault you know.

    The media’s fighting too?!? I wasn’t aware of that.

  6. Fattkidd March 24, 2006 at 2:00 pm #

    Well, I think somewhere around 80 of them have been killed since it started. So, you’d think they were. But, people are saying that they aren’t getting out enough and reporting on all of the good things happening in Iraq. That’s the new public support tactic being employed… blame the media… it’s all their fault.

  7. The Kid March 26, 2006 at 7:06 pm #

    Ohh, I’d be the first to join you on the media “Hate Train.” Choo, choo! All aboard!

    But, my article only was speaking of Bob Schieffer being a good anchor, not how much I love the media, as a whore — umm, I mean ‘whole’.

    Dig?

  8. Fattkidd March 27, 2006 at 12:00 pm #

    I wasn’t trying to say I hate the media. Just Katie Couric!!!

  9. The Kid March 27, 2006 at 3:37 pm #

    >>I wasn’t trying to say I hate the media. Just Katie Couric!!!

    Yeah, I know. . .

    I’m just saying, CBS, PLEASE, PLEASE — don’t do it. Don’t go ‘Today Show’ on me! Don’t bring the solid institution of CBS News, an institution that took 40+ yrs. to build, and turn it into the sensationalized garbage newscast that many of the “other” networks are slingin’ — just to get some ratings.

    Do it and you’ll loose me! That’s for sure!

  10. Jonathan March 27, 2006 at 9:21 pm #

    See! I didn’t even know it was the “Evening News”! My evening starts at about 8:30PM. The work day is from 5:30AM to 7:30 PM……..come to think of it…….I DO need a new job. I work too fucking much!

  11. Fattkidd March 28, 2006 at 10:21 am #

    Yes… you do.

  12. Fattkidd April 4, 2006 at 9:32 am #

    Well, it seems that Ms. Kouric and CBS have reached a tentative deal that would make her the anchor and also give her a regular spot on 60 mins. Goodnight and goodluck, Bob.

  13. The Kid April 5, 2006 at 10:43 am #

    Yeah, there needs to be a NATIONWIDE BOYCOTT!! COME ON! I mean I’m no sexist or anything, but a woman in the CBS anchor chair — and Kouric on top of it?!?! This ain’t no ‘Today Show’, this is the CBS Evening News!

    I guess the old adage that “money corrupts everything” isn’t far from what’s going on here. They want better ratings, they want to get out of third place, so they’re obviously prepared to turn the “News” into the sensationalized garbage you find on the “other” networks.

    And, giving her a chair on ’60 Minutes’ as well! WTF?!? Where the does madness end?!?

  14. Non Fat Kids April 7, 2006 at 12:10 pm #

    Katie joining CBS and 60 minutes is enough to make me start watching TeleMundo. It is clear that most TV/Film/Etc. is more about appearance than substance. It tires me to no end the constant garbage. Do I expect too much? Am I an elitist, maybe? But Katie on CBS is not what this world needs. I would rather see Matt Lower(spelling) than Katie. Now that is scary.

  15. Fattkidd April 10, 2006 at 9:38 am #

    It’s a crime against the Fourth Estate that they keep tabs of ratings on national news shows in the first place. Providing the news that affects out daily lives is a public service and should be treated as such. It should be a condition of being able to opertate on the publicly owned airwaves (which the FCC is under constant pressure to privatize). And, they should be required to report on actual newsworthy events (like a President ordering the outing of a CIA operative working on tracking down WMD in the Mid East, for political purposes), not bullshit fluff stories about miracle dogs with three legs that survive hit and runs or stupid health related stories (infomercials) about some new drug being developed by Phizer that might cure cronic stupidity!
    Katie Couric being named anchor for CBS is just the next step in the erosion of NEWS into INFOTAINMENT! I suggest everyone turn off the idiot box and go read something.

    BOYCOTT TV!!!!!!!!!

  16. The Kid April 10, 2006 at 12:24 pm #

    And how, Spanky!

  17. fran jacobs September 6, 2006 at 8:51 am #

    Actually, Bob Schiefer is better than Cronkite was — professional, gracious, wise and witty, without Cronkite’s ego and attitude , which sometimes bordered on arrogance. (Still, it was shameful how he, too, was shafted by the greed and non-savvy Tisch regime.) Couric is thin, boring and lacks true depth and gravitas. It would appear that she spells the end of what was once an estimable institution – “the Tiffany network” turns out to be a cloudy rhinestone instead of the parkling, multi-faceed diamond it once was.

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