Space Ramblings

Katie Couric as the New Oprah? Bad Idea

I don’t know why Katie Couric kept trying to reinvent herself, but if she’s serious about trying to replace Oprah, it’s a bad idea. Bad for her anyway. A salvation for CBS News which may be able to replace her with a less expensive personality who might bring some credibility back to the evening news. But Couric is as unqualified to be Oprah as she was to be Dan Rather.

The monster here is the Today Show, or that particular incarnation of it when it was such a dominant force boosting the careers of everyone associated with it and moving them up the Peter Principle career ladder. Its success made Bryant Gumbel think he was such a hot commodity that CBS thought buying him would let them beat Today. Didn’t work. Katie Couric’s Today presence made CBS think that audiences would follow her to the evening news. Didn’t happen either. Let’s not forget Jeff Zucker, the ultimate Today success story.

Katie Couric worked on Today because she was bland. Her voice went in one ear and out the other. That’s exactly why she doesn’t work on the news. And she’s just as qualified to be Oprah, who for all her obnoxious antics has a personality (even if it’s fake), Couric doesn’t. She’s a cheerleader who made a fine career of being pretty and reading things off a screen. She works in that narrow role of being someone it’s okay to listen to in the morning before you’re completely awake. She would be perfect doing commercial voiceovers. That’s it.

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