4
| Media |

Perkiness Overload

^
Keep Westword Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Denver and help keep the future of Westword free.

The February ratings period is over, and if Channel 9's seemingly perpetual lead shrank a bit in several time periods, the margin between its broadcasts and those aired by competitors remains hefty. For instance, a Channel 4 press release boasts that ratings of its 6 a.m. newscast grew 71 percent in a year -- an impressive rise. Yet CBS4 continues to draw fewer than half the viewers who tune to Channel 9; the former boasts a 3.1 rating/12 share, while the later registers a 6.7 rating/25 share.

Nevertheless, Channel 4 isn't ready to quietly accept also-ran status. The station hired forecaster Stacey Donaldson away from Channel 31 (whose morning newscast is still limping along ratings-wise), and has gone to extremes to ballyhoo her arrival.

Some painful examples? On March 2, the outlet aired a seemingly endless chat between Donaldson and morning anchor Brooke Wagner in which the major topics were Pop Tarts and knitting. That was followed by live banter that hit cutesiness overload the second Wagner and co-anchor Tom Mustin donned glasses intended to echo Donaldson's trademark specs. In addition, the station's website includes another extended video in which main weather guru Ed Greene welcomes Donaldson aboard at excruciating length.

With this week's broadcasts, Donaldson is officially part of the Channel 4 team -- and based on a couple of days' worth of shows, it's clear that the assorted squad members will have to play together for a while before they find the right balance. Right now, everyone's trying much too hard to be bright and up and sunshiny -- so much so that the effect can be downright grating at times. Donaldson is a strong presence who could help CBS4 chip away at 9News' still-substantial ratings total, but only if the perkiness is dialed down a notch or twelve. -- Michael Roberts

Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.

 

Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.

 

Join the Westword community and help support independent local journalism in Denver.