Sunday, May 19, 2024

Fox News in Ratings Freefall as Maddow Trounces Hannity, Former CBS News Chief David Rhodes Eyes Top Job


It’s panic time at my old stomping grounds, Fox News.

There are reports that Suzanne Scott, who’s been running the show since Roger Ailes was destroyed and ousted, is on her way out. David Rhodes, former head of CBS News, who started under Ailes at Fox in 1996, is said to be in line to take over. He returned to Fox News almost a year ago and is running the London operation.

What’s happened? Fox News is in a ratings freefall. During the day and afternoon CNN is now beating it over the head. Later, at 9pm, Rachel Maddow has opened a wide lead over Sean Hannity. On Wednesday night, when the impeachment vote was happening, Maddow scored 4,7 million viewers. Hannity had under just 3.3 million.

Maddow trounced Hannity every day this week, actually. And that translated into the 10pm slot, with Lawrence O’Donnell handing Laura Ingraham her hat, as they used to say. As in: here’s your hat, what’s your hurry?

With Donald Trump’s presidency falling apart, smashed into pieces, Fox News viewers are leaving the channel in droves. They probably now understand they’ve been lied to 24/7 for five years, since Trump became a possible presidential candidate.

Right behind Maddow on Wednesday, numbers wise, was Wolf Blitzer’s Situation Room on CNN. He and Jake Tapper scored 4.7 million viewers on their own as events in Washington that actually affect our lives are followed on real networks and not fake ones, like Fox News, where right wing opinion creates “alternative facts.”

And really crazy right wing viewers have left Fox completely, maybe for Sinclair or OANN or the Dark Web. Fox is at a cross roads. No one in their right minds respects them, and really nutty people don’t think they’re wacky enough.

Someone will have to do a survey to see how many more Fox News viewers contracted or died from COVID after listening to their guests tell them not to wear masks etc.

Pretty funny, no? Having thrown in with Trump uncategorically for the last four or five years, Fox News can no longer be trusted by anyone. And what is the guiding principle now since Trump encouraged the Capitol riots? On Fox & Friends, the nitwit anchors can’t even agree on what is wrong or right. Steve Doocey and Brian Kilmeade, programmed to rationalize every idiotic and dangerous thing, and not very bright on good days, are openly fighting with each other. LOL.



Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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