When Roger Ailes took over the Fox Television stations after Rupert Murdoch’s son Lachlan quit, one of his first moves was to cancel the newly-revived A Current Affair and replace it with a cobbled-together show starring his old pal Geraldo Rivera.
Well, Geraldo At Large continues to draw lower ratings than the show it replaced.
Ratings Box: What's Hot/What's Not
Geraldo at Large Update:
After 14 weeks of a limited to-date run, Twentieth Television first-run half-hour strip Geraldo at Large remains down from both the lead-in and year-ago time period averages. Based on 37 markets, Geraldo at Large is averaging a 2.3/ 4 in the overnights-- down 35 percent in rating and one share point from the lead-in average (3.5/ 7). The Feb. 2006 time period average was a 2.5/ 5.
Geraldo At Large's failure was in the cards from the start. Ailes only killed A Current Affair because it was a competitive threat to Fox News' greener news staff, and shifted Geraldo from Fox News because he had a fat Ailes contract but didn't fit the Fox News political profile. After playing the fool in Afghanistan and New Orleans, Geraldo is no longer the legend of Good Night America (far more influential to today's crop than the Good Night COMMA and Good Luck myth), but a parody from another era. And his show is obviously being produced by newspeople who don't get the joke, or the difference between news broadcasts and syndicated magazine entertainment. It's apparent as the show veers from hardcore tabloid stories to 1980s-Magid-style-local news segments on trumped-up consumer dangers like “Killer I-pods.”
Then again, who's watching? If anyone wants to fix things, they could start with the promos. They've got these jarring, crude ads running in and around Fox prime time, during and near family shows like American Idol and Skating with Celebrities. One minute it's Joey from Full House on hockey skates and then Geraldo's barking a world's-ending tease about sickos, perverts, child sex fiends, boy-raping school teachers and porn stars. Then the kids ask questions like, “Daddy, what’s this Geraldo (with a hard “G”) talking about?"
He’s literally scaring the kids!
(For the inside story of Geraldo’s original foray into tabloid television, read Tabloid Baby, and chapters like ”Geraldo Finds His Hitler”!)