Last night's Channel 31 newscasts weren't only notable for the outlet's groundbreaking cat-in-a-bong story. The station also debuted its new set, which is being hyped for its green design; it reportedly uses just one-tenth the electricity of its predecessor. Which is a good thing, of course -- but that doesn't mean it looked great on the air. Although the anchor desk and overhead lighting halo give off a nice deck-of-the-Enterprise vibe when viewed from a distance, as in the accompanying photo, the more standard mid-range and close-up shots suggest the sort of temporary digs TV broadcasters commonly use when waiting for construction of the main studio to be completed. The effect feels haphazard, slapdash, as if the set had been plopped into the middle of the newsroom -- which is precisely where it resides. (The new Channel 2 set will be directly across from it.) Given the diminished resources available to traditional news outlets like Channel 31, a less glitzy appearance is probably appropriate. But just because it was cheaper doesn't mean it should look that way.
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