• Misprounciations and other language flubs littered this weekend's newscasts. Viewers watching Saturday's 5:30 p.m. news had the opportunity to hear good reporter/abominable anchor Suzanne Deyo make several references to "hez-BALL-uh," while anyone who caught Sunday morning's WOWT story-recycling project were treated to schpitting anchor Rachel Pierce describing wildfires in California's "YUKE-uh" Valley. Channel 3 Viewers on Saturday were told, via a graphic, not to "overdue" it when it's hot outside. And why KXVO even bothers is a mystery; Sunday night's program was hosted by some poor sap whose speech impediment prevents him from pronouncing his rs. It was like listening to Elmer Fudd, only less funny.
• One alert reader notes that he made the mistake of having Channel 6 on at 5 p.m. Friday.
While half listening I heard Gary Smollen say one of the earlier robberies was at a "FirsTier branch at 88th and Arbor." Uh, Channel Sucks must need some new phone books post- 1990. That branch is a TierOne Bank." Similar names, I'll admit, but having previously worked at FirsTier in the '80's, I can tell you that FirsTier became First Bank about 1990 and evenutally morphed into U.S. Bank.Comment: We've never seen anything involving Smollen that suggested he was anything other than an idiot of the highest magnitude. Few reporters can match his corpse-like delivery and apparent cluelessness about the things he covers.
• KETV's FUBAR Fazal turned in another one for the blooper tape Sunday night at 10. Reporting from near Oakview Mall (site, incidentally, of her famed "United Pacific" reference), FUBAR declared that the grass fire she was covering was "pretty much out." In fact, she continued, all the firefighters had left. Pretty much out, FUBAR? We're guessing the absence of firefighters would be a fairly stong clue that the fire was entirely out. When's the last time she saw firefighters leave a fire on the pretense that it was "pretty much" out? What do you have to do to get taken off the air at Channel 7?
• To the list of bumblers we'd like to bounce from this market—like Smollen—let's add KMTV's Devon Patton. Every live story he delivers includes Mr. Lockjaw (a) using an outdoor voice, when an indor voice would do just fine, (b) inovking the first person ("I just _____"), and (c) turning around and pointing at whatever is behind him, even when it isn't necessary. We had hoped that he might simmer down once the initial adrenaline rush of the "Action" format's introduction wore off, but it's clear that that isn't going to happen. If anything, he getting worse. Nice try, Devon, thanks for playing. Now pack your things and go.
• KETV's Julie Cornell offered an insipid look at "Stressed Out Kids" on Sunday at 10 p.m. Essentially it involved neurotic parents who've overscheduled and pressured their kids into states of unnatural agitation—starting with "play dates" when they were 2—now scheduling them into relaxation classes. Oh the irony. Of course, Cornell missed that angle. But we're with George Carlin on this one when he says to these parents, "You wanna help your kids? Leave 'em the fuck alone!"
• Nebraska Pubic Telvision will host a screening of "Don't Touch That Dial," a program documenting the early days of Nebraska television on Thursday at 7:00 p.m. at the Scott Conference Center. Featuring old footage going back to the days when Johnny Carson was just getting his start, the program should be a great look back at pre-consultant television. Admission is free.