The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

10 May 2006

Jerry Springer, Cincinnati, Television Syndication, Progressive Movement


Trashmeister Marks 3000 Shows, Continues Lefty Radio

As the undisputed king of trash television celebrates 3000 episodes, champagne corks will be popping tomorrow at "Jerry Springer Show" headquarters in Chicago.

From the Cincinnati Enquirer:

Can you believe it? Jerry Springer's daytime talk show - called the worst show on TV by TV Guide - has been on the air for 15 years.

"Jerry Springer" broadcasts its 3,000th episode as a two-day special Thursday-Friday (9 a.m., Channels 64, 45) that will include clips of his Sept. 30, 1991 premiere from Cincinnati's WLWT-TV. "Springer" was a serious Phil Donahue -style show its first year in Cincinnati. Chairs didn't start flying until the show moved to Chicago in fall of 1992.

To mark the occasion, New York City's famous Carnegie Deli has named in his honor a sandwich - with lots of tongue and baloney.

Springer, 62, a former Cincinnati mayor and Channel 5 news anchor, earlier this year agreed to do the daytime TV show through summer of 2008 for NBC Universal. His TV schedule is worked around his weekday 9 a.m.-noon radio show on WCKY-AM (1530) and Air America stations.

As to why Springer has succeeded in syndication for 15 straight years, there's really no mystery: beyond all expectations, his deal with the devil has handsomely paid off. By hosting a show with no redeeming social value, television's version of human cockfighting continues to find a ready audience.

His radio program, however, is a different story. Why it exists at all poses one of the greatest scientific challenges in our universe. By the time we finally unlock its secret, there may be human colonies on Pluto.

Adding to the weirdness: instead of creating a true career image makeover with the liberal talk show, he kept the trashy television program. Now we have two Jerrys: the guy in the middle of nasty chair fights, the other putting his tiny radio audience to sleep each afternoon.

Which one is the real Jerry Springer?

On television, he gets ratings, makes a tremendous amount of money and has astounding worldwide name recognition. In London, it's even been turned into a stage opera. Other than his advancing age (now 62), there's little to prevent it from continuing for another 15 years.

On the radio, however, he's struggling. As part of Air America's mid-morning lineup, he's failed to generate any trace of a significant listenership, even in his home state of Ohio.

Rather than aspire to gain any additional affiliates, Jerry's best hope is hang on to his current list. Some have already cancelled it.

With a low-energy, wonkish approach, it's truly hard to believe you're hearing the same Springer that's seen on TV. Boring and ineffective, the trashmeister often sounds like he'd rather be busting up an onstage klansman vs. Black Panther brawl, than hosting talk radio.

With that kind of performance, why does this wretched show continue?

In addition, there are much bigger questions: why would the so-called "progressive" movement want anything to do with the likes of Jerry Springer? Do they really believe he somehow benefits their movement?

And when will they admit he has an image problem?

During tomorrow's celebrations, perhaps somebody can find out what Jerry himself has to say about these perplexing mysteries.

Thanks again for your continued Radio Equalizer support, via Amazon orders that originate with clicks here, regardless of what you ultimately order. It's much appreciated!

Springer with Alan Colmes: Colmes website, Springer Sandwich: James Edstrom- NBC, Springerbunny: David A Lunde


  • Springer STILL has a TV show on the air?! I HARDLY NOTICED!

    By Blogger The Real Bob Anthony, at 10 May, 2006 18:56  

  • Why would AAR want anything to do with Springer? Because he has NAME RECOGNITION. Why else? They probably thought it was a no-brainer. If he brought with him even a tiny portion of his television audience, they'd have decent ratings. But Jerry didn't even do that.

    I must agree with most of your other statements: his radio show is downright snore-inducing, even if I do agree with most of his politics.

    There, I said it. You're right. Springer's radio show isn't at all interesting. I tried it a few times, then gave up. Who knows how much longer it'll last.

    By Blogger Scott, at 13 May, 2006 02:12  

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