P.F. Chang’s

WLS-TV, the ABC news affiliate in Chicago, took the gold in Olympics Title Error:

Jayme Nicholas, a spokesperson for the ABC affiliate in Chicago, told Inc. that the goof was the result of a mix-up. The graphic was created for a different “satirical piece” put together on Friday by sports anchor Mark Giangreco in which viewers were encouraged to invent their own Olympic sports, but it was mistakenly also used for the serious news story read on Saturday by weekend anchor Mark Rivera, Nicholas said.

Someone is sooooooo fired.

P.F. Chang's || WNBTv

Sinclair Broadcast Group

The company that is soon to own WDAF 4 has instituted a lot of changes at it’s stations; take WJAR-TV, which is mandated to broadcast of multiple programs favorable to Generalissimo Donaldo Juan Trumpo on that state’s most-watched television station.

Sinclair Broadcast Group, a rapidly growing media company that bought Channel 10 in 2014, produces “must-run” segments and distributes them to its local stations nationwide. They must air during daily news programming, Sinclair executives said.

Sinclair is poised to become the nation’s largest owner of TV stations and, with its recent hire of former Trump aide Boris Epshteyn, viewers can expect to see more of the chain’s political programming.

The practice, which has infused a political flavor into the 68-year-old WJAR’s broadcasts, started quietly there at least a year ago.

Three of the segments have rattled viewers and WJAR’s own news reporters, according to Fletcher Fischer, the business manager and financial secretary of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 1228, the union that represents broadcast workers there:

  • The Terrorism Alert Desk, advertised as a daily news update about terrorist activity.
  • News pieces from Epshteyn, Sinclair’s chief political analyst.
  • A clearly labeled opinion show featuring Mark Hyman, a former vice president of the company.

These pieces are fed to Sinclair’s 174 stations in the United States every day.

Sinclair’s insertion of the segments into news programming has been harshly critiqued by Rhode Islanders and national commentators.

Gloria Crist, a 54-year-old actress from Tiverton, says she’s stopped watching the station.

Rep. David N. Cicilline condemned the practice, saying: “Rhode Islanders rely on our local news being produced in Rhode Island, not directed by a national conglomerate for local broadcasters to deliver.”

Washington Post media columnist Margaret Sullivan wrote, “What Fox News is for cable, Sinclair could become for broadcast: programming with a soupçon — or more — of conservative spin.”

And HBO’s John Oliver dedicated a show to what he calls Sinclair’s corporate propaganda.

But Sinclair says it’s providing national commentary to “free up” reporters “to create more local news, which we considered to be squarely in the public interest.”

So much for the “liberal” mainstream media, n’est-ce pas?

WDAF is already a FOX sock puppet, so perhaps there won’t be too significant a change locally. And hey! our own Terrorism Alert Desk! Hoo boy – bring on the popcorn!

Better yet, Sinclair is launching a “national investigative news team“, which we would assume, would –at least locally– delve into the Kansas City Water Department incompetency, the downtown hotel cash give-away, as well as the illegalities surrounding the street car.

What could possibly go wrong?

Sinclair Broadcast Group

Confederate

So, once again: “Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it.1

HBO’s motives aside, the plea to wait supposes that a problem of conception can be fixed in execution. We do not need to wait to observe that this supposition is, at best, dicey. For over a century, Hollywood has churned out well-executed, slickly produced epics which advanced the Lost Cause myth of the Civil War. These are true “alternative histories,” built on “alternative facts,” assembled to depict the Confederacy as a wonderland of virtuous damsels and gallant knights, instead of the sprawling kleptocratic police state it actually was. From last century’s The Birth of a Nation to this century’s Gods and Generals, Hollywood has likely done more than any other American institution to obstruct a truthful apprehension of the Civil War, and thus modern America’s very origins. So one need not wait to observe that any foray by HBO into the Civil War must be met with a spirit of pointed inquiry and a withholding of all benefit of the doubt.”

Confederate

“After all, this show’s premise proposes to create a “fictionalized” plot about the continuation of slavery, as if thousands of American farmers and corporations didn’t continue to practice slavery well into the 1940s. The show acts as if the latter half of the twentieth century didn’t see America’s prison population swell with millions of Black bodies. It pretends that today’s prisons and venerable corporations don’t exploit the 13th amendment to profit from forced prison labor. HBO’s Confederate imagines that there aren’t more people under state control today than there were in chains at the peak of American slavery.”

Confederate

Confederate, the sci-fi, alt-history drama of what the United States would look like if the North had lost the Civil War, had been announced by HBO in late July. The brainchild of Game of Thrones writers David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, the series is a four-part collaboration between Weiss and Benioff, who are white, and Nichelle Tramble Spellman and Malcolm Spellman, a married writer and producer couple, who are black. The Spellmans are behind hit television shows The Good Wife and Empire.

The show, in early stages of development, has received major backlash. April Reign, creator of the hashtag #OscarsSoWhite, mobilized the Twittersphere on Sunday night with #NoConfederate, a joint effort between Reign and activists Rebecca Theodore, Jamie Broadnax, Shanelle Little, and Lauren Warren. And they were not alone in their concerns — earlier, critic Roxane Gay had condemned the series in the New York Times, calling it “slavery fan fiction.”

The message? Do not run this show.

Reign posits that the subject alone is reason enough to cancel the show, pointing out that the effects of slavery are still felt today. Responding to someone suggesting that the show might illustrate what living with racism is like, Reign tweeted: “You mean white people. People of color are well aware of this. We don’t need a TV show. We have, you know, our daily existence and stuff.”

Confederate

Show 1 footnote

  1. Or, if one is cynical enough, perhaps HBO knows exactly what its doing: broadening the blood thirsty audience brought in by GoT to include the drooling knuckle-dragging, paste-eating tRump supporters who would normally eschew HBO as being too “cosmopolitan.”

The Truth is Out There

Apparently The X Files is making a comeback next year. And while I’m good with any project that showcases Gillian Anderson 1, I do so wish FOX had chosen to revive Millennium instead. Or gone really crazy and continued Rubicon from where it suddenly died. Oh, well.

The Truth is Out There

Show 1 footnote

  1. Have you by any chance seen The Fall? Outstanding…

GoT IMAX

HBO and Imax have struck a deal to make “Game of Thrones” the first TV series to grace the theatrical distributors’ big screens.

An exclusive season five trailer, as well as the final two episodes of the fourth season, will get an unprecedented run Jan. 23-29 at 150 theaters in top markets across the U.S.

While the visual spectacle of the HBO hit makes it a natural for the large-screen treatment, “Thrones” will be digitally remastered to fit the Imax format.

Fans will be able to purchase tickets to the special event for an unspecified price on Imax.com in the coming weeks.

The bastards are intent on making my ears bleed.

We took the Astas to see The Hobbit: The Five Armies on an IMAX screen 1 over the holidays and it was physically painful.

We had no issues with the 3D IMAX screen per se – the lensing and 3D presentation was beautifully done. No, our problem was the over-the-top, unrelenting aural assault of the preceding trailers, an obvious case of dynamic range compression gone wild. At one point, with the score to an upcoming remake of Moby Dick threatening to pop my eardrums, I stuffed my fingers in my ears and glanced around. Not only were our little brave band of movie goers doing likewise, but so was nearly all the rest of the audience.

Look, I get it – there are burnouts who willingly, eagerly submit themselves to acoustic overload: NASCAR junkies, thrash & metal fans, that person at work with the perpetually nagging spouse. 2 And that’s all fine and good.

But for those of us who have seen what IMAX can do for opera (the Met’s amazing series), circuses, most certainly NASA, not to mention The Muppets, being forced to watch 20 minutes of Arnie and Crew in the latest Skynet feature with noise levels over 100dB is waaaay past excessive. If I desired extreme sound, I’d rejoin the RA, where every weapon I ever used was well over 120dB. Hell, I might even ask to be part of a Bradley crew, if only for the pleasure of blowing the shit out of the offices of whichever particular AMC jackass executive who decided America’s hearing capacity needed degrading.

In fact, especially since you have to pay extra to be injured, I will flat-out state we won’t view another “normal” AMC Town Center IMAX film again. Just not worth it. 3
Game of Thrones IMAX

Show 3 footnotes

  1. AMC’s Town Center 20 on Nall.
  2. Claims it’s the only time they ever get “relief” from the continual carping.
  3. Besides…that “exclusive” season 5 trailer? Yeah, it’s not near as exclusive as they make out.