Picks and Pans Review: Tv Nation

updated 07/25/1994 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 07/25/1994 AT 01:00 AM EDT

(NBC, Tuesdays, 8 p.m. ET)


Apparently this summer newsmagazine, created and hosted by filmmaker Michael (Roger & Me) Moore, is supposed to be a 60 Minutes for those who figured Spy magazine wasn't sarcastic enough. And to be fair, there are funny segments, such as those on a Minnesota prison without prisoners and pets who need Prozac, both reported by the always amusing Merrill Markoe. A past segment featuring African-American actor Yaphet Kotto trying to get a cab in New York City is also pure genius. Some good ideas, such as having CEOs of major corporations test their products on-camera, never come together because Moore seems to think he's much funnier than he is. Worse, the reporting on serious stories can be deceptive. A piece about AIDS patients who sell their life insurance policies to obtain spending money castigates the policy buyers without offering the point of view of any of the patients. A newsmagazine with a hip attitude is basically a good idea. A newsmagazine with a flip approach is not.

(David Hiltbrand is on vacation.)

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