Picks and Pans Review: The Reporters
Fox (Saturdays, 8 p.m. ET)
The worst thing about The Reporters is not the show itself but the trend of which it is a part—the aforelamented rush toward tabloid TV. The Reporters is no worse (and in some ways better) than America's Most Wanted or West 57th. Here streetwise reporters get involved in their stories. In the first episode, already aired, we see another interview with Mike Tyson. There's only so much you can say about the guy once you've said he's rich and this show says it all—even asking Tyson about rumors that he is homosexual ("What can I say?" Tyson shrugs). There is a sensationalists story about an actress whose dwarf son is accused of murdering her. This segment is littered with bad re-creations of the crime and with prose the color of a Cardinal's closet: "Now there was nothing ahead of her but terror!" In a story about a musical prodigy's immigration problems, the reporter gets way too involved, hugging the subject. Later episodes were much the same, with tales of murder, stories of a female Anglican priest artificially inseminated by fellow priests and celeb interviews. The segments are sometimes good, sometimes tacky. The shows are sometimes glossy but sometimes they just gloss over the facts. What The Reporters really needs is heavy editing. But what we viewers really need is not another show like this. What we need from Fox is another Tracey Ullman.
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