Channel Surfing
by Laura Nachman

Bucks County Courier Times

October 17, 2006


Philadelphia resident Buzz Bissinger, the author of the book “Friday Night Lights,” is disappointed the NBC television show based on last year’s film, which was based on his book is struggling in the ratings against ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars” which airs Tuesday at 8 p.m.


In an email he wrote, “I am dead serious about this:  we wonder why the country is going in the wrong direction.  We blame politicians and the presidents and everyone else.  But we are a country that revels in ignorance and mindless entertainment and the best proof of that is the fact that “Dancing with the Stars,” as silly a piece of drivel as your will find anywhere in the world is trouncing “Friday Night Lights.” I am getting very little out of “Friday Night Lights,” so I am not just speaking out of self-interest.  It is a terrific television show – real, heartfelt, poetic.  But Americans want junk.  So junk is what we will get as we continue our slide to being second-rate, dancing our way into oblivion.”


Bissinger, a contributor to “Vanity Fair,” also wrote the forward to the new book “The Philadelphia Reader,” a collection of essays from “Philadelphia” magazine over the last two decades.


Those missing the “Smooth Jazz” format of 106.1-FM can rejoice.  WTHK 97.5-FM, which was recently acquired by Greater Philadelphia Media, will switch to Jazz.


6ABC morning news anchor Tamala Edwards will deliver the keynote speech for the 24th annual “Day for All Women,” Saturday, November 4 at Bucks County Community College in Newtown, PA.  To register, call 215-968-8187.


Last Wednesday when most of the cable networks devoted their programming to the airplane crash that killed former Phillies’ pitcher, Cory Lidle, Philadelphia’s CN8 struck out.  Though it covered the story on its sports shows, “Out of Bounds” at 7 p.m. and 11 p.m., at 9 p.m., when viewers tuned into “It’s Your Call with Lynn Doyle,” they saw a previously scheduled show about “Interracial Relationships.”  Meanwhile CNN’s “Larry King Live,” assembled a panel that included several people from Philadelphia.  Then at 10 p.m., “Art Fennell Reports,” did not cover the story because it is pre-taped at 11 a.m., hours before airtime.


Former “10” host Lauren Hart can be seen performing at every Flyers’ home game this season.  For more information, go to