Four Reasons for Not Watching Every Popular TV Show

 In Blog

Let me be clear.  We do a lengthy interactive entertainment report every hour, every day, to cover the biggest pop culture stories of the day.  What I’m talking about here is devoting an entire break to recapping a popular show.

Everyone watches Glee but me.  Even people you wouldn’t expect to watch Glee, watch Glee.

My 21-year old ultra-conservative, ladies-man assistant producer loves it.  My bass-fishin’ and deer-huntin’ next door neighbor watches it.  My couch-potato street guy watches it.  Well, no surprise there, cuz he watches everything, but still…

Conventional wisdom might demand that I give in and watch it too.  Aren’t we jocks (say this in your best deejay voice) “supposed to be on top of all the pop-culture stuff our audience is into?”

That is a good question!  And the rhetoric we’ve been hearing for years demands that the answer is YES.  After all, we’re supposed to go on the next day after American Idol‘s season premiere and talk about how Steven Tyler did.  We’re supposed to talk about our favorite Superbowl commercials.  And yes, we go on the day after Glee airs and gush about how awesome and funny and sexy it is.


We’re deejays.  That’s what we do.

Someone mildly familiar with radio the other day was telling me how cool Oprah: Behind the Scenes is.  “Do you watch it?” she asked.  “No, I think I saw a little of it once.”

“Well, your audience does,” she said with just a trace of “Gotcha!” in her voice.

And conventional wisdom says I should.  Ya know what?  It wouldn’t hurt.  Don’t get me wrong.  I DO love watching TV.  I love Hoarders, I love Man vs Food and I love Pawn Stars, so it might not be a bad idea to catch Glee, Oprah, and all the other big shows.

Instead of falling in line with what has always been expected of us morning show hosts, here are four good, solid reasons for NOT watching every hugely popular TV show.  See what you think.

1.  Every other morning show in town already does.  When I hear the News-Talk station playing clips of American Idol, a tiny little bulb lit over my tiny little head.  If everyone else in town is talking about what was on TV last night, I’m gonna talk about something different.

2.  It’s okay to be unhip.  Secret:  Your audience is not nearly as hip and well-informed as you are.  They have jobs, kids, golf, volleyball, the gym and a thousand other things to keep them busy.  When you admit you have no idea who Olivia Munn is, you’re speaking for a huge chunk of your audience who is also thinking, “Never heard of her.”

3.  Watching all these shows is super time-consuming.  And if you’re watching lots of TV, or doing lots of ANY one thing, then you’re quite possibly boring.  YIKES!  Don’t be boring!  Go out and bring LOTS of things to the table on your show.  If you’re watching too much TV, that means you’re not doing enough shopping, running, yoga, volunteering, etc, etc.  The more things you do, the more interesting your show is.

4.  This is my favorite reason and it’s a big one.  How successful is Glee?  And how often does the cast of Glee sit around and discuss Oprah?  I don’t know for sure, but I’m guessing the answer is never.  What?  But isn’t discussing all of pop-culture necessary to ratings success?  Apparently not!

That’s because Glee is entertaining on it’s own.  30 Rock rarely interviews Heidi Montag and their ratings are awesome.  And have you ever seen American Idol do a segment where they interview one of The Real Housewives?

It takes a lot of work and a long time for a show to reach a point where it is it’s own entertainment is compelling enough that you don’t have to parrot TV shows to be relevant and addicting.  There are only a handful of shows in radio right now that can pull that off.

BUT, those shows are very successful.  Heck, I’m a big believer in finding out what successful people do and then doing the same thing.  So to me, those few shows are great shows to emulate!

I’m not saying to go in tomorrow and totally ignore the pop-culture world around you.  People still love that stuff, so make sure you cover it!  But if you can work in a little more material that isn’t available anywhere else, material about you and your life, now you’re onto something.

And let the other shows spend the morning talking about Glee.

-Dave Ryan

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