Air Book for an Airhead?

I ran into George today, but I don’t think he was stalking me. Just a coincidence. And of course we talked about Tea Makers. And yes, he’s, eh, heard of it.
It would be unfair to either of us to go into here and now, but we always have a nice little verbal tennis match when we meet.
One day I’d like to do a proper interview with him for submission here. Today was an unexpected encounter, so I didn’t have the proper release form with me for him to sign.
George has opinions about a lot of things, including Tea Makers, and I think you would agree that it would be interesting to hear them. He also insists that he’s not “being produced”, so we’d have a lot to talk about.

I have a suggestion for George and for Newsworld.
The perfect show for both of them would be “George Stromboulopoulos Live!”, as in “Larry King Live”. An hour every night where George goes live with only one or two guests, and takes calls from viewers. I think it would have the potential to be the most riveting television show produced anywhere in Canada, and really make good use of his natural skill with an audience. The Hour seems “canned”, and it is. But for anyone who has ever gone to a taping, the best part is afterwards when he faces every question the studio audience can throw at him. It’s simply fascinating to watch and hear, and such a shame that the technicians have already gone home and these quite special moments are lost forever.
Think about it, George.
Perhaps you and Jen have already thought of such a show, and it doesn’t matter to me where the idea came from as long as it gets to air.
Guarantee I’d watch that show.
And goof on you even more.

38 comments:

  1. Another Anon
    Posted January 26, 2010 at 9:55 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I’m not sure why this is even a post. Terrible. One thing I have noticed, George needs to get some sleep. He looks like shite!!

  2. PoonGirljoined December 31, 2009
    Posted January 26, 2010 at 9:43 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Yeah but Ouimet, re-posting this is just like when George slaps together a mish-mash of interviews and calls it a “special”. I know Allan doesn’t like “stock footage”.
    Maybe I’m bitter. When I call Allan I don’t berate him ! I HELP him. Notice how Allan didn’t describe that icontraption as “neat” ? That is because of ME ! He always says neat, and I help him become a better man.

  3. PoonGirljoined December 31, 2009
    Posted January 26, 2010 at 8:20 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    When Allan can’t think of anything new does he just sift through old posts and re-up them ?

    • Allanjoined April 10, 2009
      Posted January 26, 2010 at 8:55 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

      here we are 2 YEARS LATER …

      kind of you to put a question mark at the end of that sentence.
      Getting soft, PoonGirl?
      No, a larger hand in the sky moves these posts about. Meaning Ouimet.
      And there’s the cringe factor, of being reminded of some abhorrent behaviour from the past (even (Being) Erica had those).
      Ouimet is just having fun.

    • Ouimetjoined April 10, 2009
      Posted January 26, 2010 at 9:09 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

      This was a bit of a breakthrough post, back in the day. Also, the photo was good. So what with new Apple news tomorrow, and the CBC telephoning Allan for his opinion, I thought some of you might enjoy this one.

  4. anonymous
    Posted January 26, 2010 at 7:58 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    The problem with many of the arguments here is that George isn’t a very good host. He’s not too serious, he’s not too funny. Right down the boring middle. He’s incapable of being funny, and like Larry King throws softballs questions at his guests as he fawns over them. If Larry King mated with Arsenio Hall, you’d get Strombo.

  5. Allan
    Posted March 7, 2008 at 7:18 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    So, Sherry, you think working for the CBC is something special?

  6. Anonymous
    Posted March 1, 2008 at 10:31 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    no more “Allan” please…
    he’s a mental case

  7. Sherry
    Posted February 29, 2008 at 4:36 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Here’s a tidbit: Allan does not work for the CBC, nor has he ever. EVER.

    That’s what makes him so freaking spooky.

  8. Anonymous
    Posted February 29, 2008 at 12:45 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    i agree with this guy:

    doesn’t “Allan” have a job?
    where does he find the time to continually blog?
    can’t the CBC find him something to do?

    except i’d rather it be YTV or CMT…or ideally nothing related to broadcasting, or the public for that matter, and definitely not the world wide web or even .jpgs.

    you get the idea.

    i’m a little worried this allan guy is gonna go postal. and because teamakers is giving him a forum to obsess about CBC, means he’ll probably go all ‘qaeda at the broadcast centre, rather than just doing it at a Wendy’s.

    hope you can live with the very real idea of that, ouimet.

    and you really should post this comment. seems only fair since this freak writes about my workplace all the bloody time.

  9. Anonymous
    Posted February 27, 2008 at 9:45 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    will someone please call security and have allan escorted out of the building

  10. Allan
    Posted February 27, 2008 at 8:59 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    We are all George. And George is us.

  11. Anonymous
    Posted February 27, 2008 at 10:04 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    allan, you are not george. you will never be george. you have to stop fantasizing about what your life would be like if you were george. you are allan. you have to live with that. i know you’re not proud of who you are or what you do, but that’s not george’s fault. you might feel better about yourself if you turned off the internet, left your mom’s basement, and went for a walk around the block. go see some strippers or something. go to the zoo with some of your buddies from the halfway house or something. just move on.

  12. Allan
    Posted February 26, 2008 at 9:19 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Instead, they could have said “and later on we’ll be taking your calls … “.
    Keep the trivia coming CBC.
    Makes the corporation easier to overthrow.

  13. Johnny Happypants
    Posted February 26, 2008 at 8:13 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    “CBC has done this look-to-the-
    web-for-details option for a
    number of years on planned stories
    with excessive minutae.”

    Like duh. That should be the primary purpose of cbc.ca. I won’t argue with that. To suggest someone go there for “budget trivia” 3 minutes into our flagship newscast is still, to me, a bit shocking.

  14. Bill Lee
    Posted February 26, 2008 at 11:50 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Blogger Johnny Happypants said…

    > A little off topic here. Sorry.

    > World Report this morning. Did
    > Judy Madrin, 3 minutes into the show,
    > tell me to go to the website for
    > budget trivia? (To be fair…she sounded
    > a little less enthusiastic than she
    > did at seven.)

    > It has begun.

    > Even the Magid inspired ad in the
    > Globe didn’t go this low.

    You tnink that Judy Maddren
    speaks to you personally?
    My, isn’t the CBC mind-bending
    campaign a success.

    CBC has done this look-to-the-
    web-for-details option for a
    number of years on planned stories
    with excessive minutae.

    And the real story today, and
    promoted by the CBC is Hockey
    Trading Day results are final
    this! evening! right! now!

    Budget? Hoo-hah!! Lets see
    the estimates in two days time
    when we see the CBC allocation
    upped by 50 million for digital
    TV deprivation of rural Alberta.

    And I find that exotic race-car
    driver Cathy Haag of CBCOverslumber
    whispers just to me each night.

    CBC.ca – Program Guide – Judy Maddren
    URL: http://www.cbc.ca/programguide/
    personality/index.jsp?personality=Maddren%2C+
    Judy&program=World+Report

  15. Johnny Happypants
    Posted February 26, 2008 at 6:27 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    A little off topic here. Sorry.

    World Report this morning. Did Judy Madrin, 3 minutes into the show, tell me to go to the website for budget trivia? (To be fair…she sounded a little less enthusiastic than she did at seven.)

    It has begun.

    Even the Magid inspired ad in the Globe didn’t go this low.

  16. Allan
    Posted February 25, 2008 at 9:44 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    George reminded me that it’s been a year and a half now since the jump to the main network. And I remember the first show, it was so good. George showed pages from the internet, read email, even got a dig in at CBC management. I thought “they’ve gotten so many things right”. And a total coup with Belinda as the opening – an exclusive right from the headlines.
    But by the third show it was all over, and the guests got worse and The Hour has been the same ever since. Including pretending that Nickelback was live when they had been taped and were asked to act as if the Junos were in the past when they still hadn’t taken place.
    That’s phony. That’s George being party to being phony.

    As I wrote the piece and reflected on it, I realized that there were two critical elements to a better show.
    What the country needs is a live phone-in show.
    A way for citizens to become part of a national dialogue, to ask their own questions their own way. To be able to put it to Harper, Chretien, and movie stars and authors and musicians. To ask the questions even the host is afraid to ask.
    Accepting calls, inviting input, shows respect for the viewers, incorporating them into the content as a vital element to the value of the information being presented.
    And it needs a host who has some nerve and confidence and the trust of viewers.
    And I suggest George has that potential more than anyone else in the CBC stable, except for Wendy Mesley. And I’d be fine with her doing that show too.

    Is this too difficult a concept to understand?
    Or is mediocrity and “why bother trying” the order of the day under Stursberg?

    some great comments submitted above, particularly from Anon at 5:36

  17. Mike
    Posted February 25, 2008 at 7:15 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    The idea is good, take The Hour take out the canned stuff make it a full hour long (so no ads), sometimes a band or singer at the end, would make a great show. I’m thinking The Hour could be the Canadian version of the popular Friday Night with Jonathon Ross from the BCC mixed with the Parkinson show that was on the BBC and then on ITV.

  18. Anonymous
    Posted February 25, 2008 at 5:04 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    doesn’t “Allan” have a job?
    where does he find the time to continually blog?
    can’t the CBC find him something to do?

  19. Anonymous
    Posted February 25, 2008 at 3:36 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I hate to say it, but I somewhat agree with Allan.

    The notion of a live, one-hour show with 2 main, off-the-cuff interviews has been done in the past

    …by The Hour itself.

    It was the format of the first 2 seasons. Plus, viewers could email or call with their opinions; many emails were read live on the air. It was engaging and interactive. It wasn’t until the show branched to the main network that it became packaged and over-produced, content became overly-segmented, guests became farmed from the circuit, humour became forcibly scripted, and the initial edge it had was lost. It’s no longer genuine. And being genuine was the concept that initially drove it. So what does that make the show now?

    The problem I find isn’t the show or the host or even the approach; it’s a mentality that many, if not ALL networks have about the way to generate viewership: by undermining the viewer’s intelligence and taste. It’s the formulaic desire to cater to the lowest common denominator; to place style over substance. It’s the same formula as tabloid mags and pop stars and any form of falsified “art.” Sadly, it works… or does it? Have viewers ever been given any other intelligent alternative outside of a hard-line, traditional newscast?

    Light and fluffy or harsh and depressing. These are the only options. Never a cross-section.

    I’d like to think that the Canadian viewer is a bit more intelligent than to buy into surface-values and cheesy comedy. To be entertained by and drawn to interesting information, the way George is so skilled at presenting. Seasons 1 and 2 were successful in those endeavors, to the point of naming it to the main network. Had it been given the chance to grow there using the same format, it could have been that ground-breaking cross-section.

    While I don’t believe the clock can, will, or should be turned back on the program this far into the game, I also don’t believe the initial idea could be properly emulated by anyone else at this point either. The time and opportunity has passed. And that’s a real shame for viewer, program and network alike. Sigh.

  20. Allan
    Posted February 25, 2008 at 12:36 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    “despise” is a word I reserve for Jian and Stursberg, “disappointed” is what I associate with The Hour.

  21. Anonymous
    Posted February 25, 2008 at 11:45 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    It’s three pictures… big freakin’ deal. If it was 50, yeah I could understand the complaint, but it’s just three. Three makes the post interesting because it shows different expressions and different poses from the same setting.

    That said, why do you care so much about something that obviously think is horrible? That makes no sense. You hate the show, you hate George, yet you continually seek him and the show out. Why waste your time on something and someone you so obviously despise? I’d think you’d have more worthwhile things you can do with your time.

  22. Allan
    Posted February 25, 2008 at 10:43 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Yes, a cool notebook for a cool guy*. Over at The Hour’s blog I notice the “F” word is readily permitted. What’s not permitted is a critical opinion.
    Readers must be protected from hearing anyone say …
    Why 3 pictures of Ryan when one would do?
    Why concert reviews that have nothing to do with The Hour?
    Scary difficult questions.

    *but I’m still not over the iPod Touch.

  23. Anonymous
    Posted February 25, 2008 at 8:21 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Air Book for an Airhead? Sincere
    congratulations Allan on your new computer…

  24. Allan
    Posted February 25, 2008 at 7:14 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Two hours on Sunday afternoon radio talking about the federal budget is hardly the equivalent of Larry King. Cross Country is great, but I’d rather listen to Howard.
    Can you point to anything else?

    When Jian was off and another person took over “Q” was there really much difference to the show? Was he missed? By who?
    He’s a snob, and it comes through over the air. Needs to be taken down a peg.
    Did he sign his contract using Crazy Glue, because there seems to be no way he’s leaving the CBC. Looks like we’re stuck with him for eternity. I suspect even VH1 doesn’t want him.

    George is actually worse on radio, bordering on disaster.
    Only on TV is his full potential realized. He’s mesmerizing to watch. It distract’s from the hollowness of his own badly scripted sentences.
    On radio all you get is the dufus part. He’s tame and uninteresting, having been conditioned to be careful around CRTC regulations.
    There are hints that he has a really good mind, but no one seems to know how to exploit his experiences and tap into those thoughts that inquiring minds want to know about. That fan site interview we had on here last year was the best performance I’ve seen him give. In person, being himself, I think he’s wonderful. I have a lot more respect for him when he deals with the unexpected and faces being put on the spot.
    I would agree that it’s likely the perks of travel that have George feeling special, but how much longer can he keep faking an interest in Coronation Street.

    Other radio irritants include the shocking, unfunny and unnecessary voice that introduces The Current. And Preston Manning croaking out an introduction at 2 mph.

    • anonymous
      Posted January 26, 2010 at 7:54 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

      How much does that Current voice make for doing one sentence a day?

  25. Anonymous
    Posted February 24, 2008 at 6:07 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    George was a good idea that came ten years too late. It is always the case that by the time the CBC recruits a hip young thing he’s a middle-aged show biz hack. (George looks like most of the youth demographic’s Dad.) It will always be thus until programming is taken from the hands of MBAs and put into the hands of people with the appropriate skills. As for Jian, he’s like someone’s creepy uncle.

  26. Anonymous
    Posted February 24, 2008 at 4:41 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    The ratings for the Hour stink and George’s potential as the next Johnny Carson or Larry King can be best summarized in two words: The One.

    Stop dreaming CBC because you have forgotten everything you once knew about making television.

    When anonymous CBC bloggers start proselytizing about the next big programming idea then you know its over. Allan’s time could be best served by writing a eulogy for the CBC and deciding where to sprinkle the ashes.

  27. SmarmyPersianFan
    Posted February 24, 2008 at 1:49 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    George is better on radio, and has a national (Corus) radio show on weekends.

    There he can let his hair down.

    CBC is solving the George problem by bringing the Jian! to TV.

    Now we can see his smirks for real! live! right! now!

    And I don’t think the Mr. Stroumboulopoulos (73000 on Google, 1000 for Stromboulopoulos–and he’s Ukrainian by the way) will stay long, he has itchy feet and without the motorcycle, the foreign trips, he won’t stay at Mothering Corp.

    Bring on the simpering Jian!, a real Toronto CBCer.

  28. Anonymous
    Posted February 24, 2008 at 1:19 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    Uhh, last time I checked Rex Murphy had people call in on Cross Country Check Up…

    In fact, isn’t that pretty much the nature of the show? Rex Murphy taking calls?

    Or does that not count?

  29. Allan
    Posted February 24, 2008 at 11:58 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    More stupid thoughts from “Allan”. I kind of like that. Quite appropriate. Though why a real person is referred to as “Allan” when it’s Allan is kind of weird.
    But now we’re getting into it.

    The Trouble With George

    The first problem with George is that he has it all wrong. It’s the wrong direction for him.
    George is of the view that he can be Canada’s version of Johnny Carson. Which he can, but he’ll never beat American shows. Ask Mike Bullard, whose show had way more edge than The Hour and was doing exactly the same thing, but at least he had musical performances. And it still wasn’t good enough. George could simply not compete with Mike. His guest list could but that’s all.
    George needs a show that is entirely different, one that emanates from his unique psyche and charming sensibilities. Here’s a guy who is liked by both young and old, which means “we have a winner!”, but The Hour is a weak variety show on which has been done a face transplant using someone who is not a performer, just a master of ceremonies (which he’s good at). Then they’ve taken out the variety by not having any music, so what are you left with – The Hour. A show “Allan” has little use for.
    George and Jen think that given time they will become so huge that they will be able to call the shots down the road. That it takes time to become powerful. That the best is just around the corner once they can shed the inhibitions of the CBC. But I don’t have the patience to wait for them to start doing the show they really want to do. The Hour is weak filler than anybody could do, and probably would be improved by changing hosts.

    The Trouble With The CBC

    “I can’t see the CBC ever allowing uncontrolled comments from the audience.”
    And there you have it.
    I agree that such is the state of the CBC today, and it totally sucks.
    If you’re not prepared to do what it takes, if you have no courage, no vision, no sense of the time we live in, then stop your whining and accept that you will never be #1.
    I’m talking to you CBC, Newsworld, Vancouver and Toronto supper hour newscasts.
    It is such utter bullshit.
    How can the CBC expect to connect to an audience if it won’t let that audience talk.
    How can the CBC expect me to respect it when it has no respect for me, and treats me like a hillbilly or a Trailer Park Boy, unworthy of being taken seriously. Yet there are more people like me in this country than there are Michael Ignatieff’s or Ralston Sauls. We may well be nitwits, but we’d like to think we count for something.
    At the CBC everything has to be taped so that it can be cleaned up for the sensitive ears of Jehovah Witnesses and the Conservative Party. Astoundingly, they can’t even consider airing a live event that warns “The following program …”.
    It’s 2008.
    What the hell has happened to our national broadcaster?
    Since when did being timid and polite begin to rule our newsrooms.
    We exist in a world of Afghanistan, of innocent people being randomly shot while just walking home.
    These are not the days of 3 stations and Lester Pearson.
    Moving placidly doesn’t cut it.
    Nor do bells and whistles courtesy of Magid hold any value.
    People ultimately want the real thing.
    They want, need and a ready for “uncontrolled comments from the audience.”

    It’s why the internet is taking over, and why people are reading blogs, you idiots!
    Stursberg wonders aloud why a foreign news service(CNN) is so popular in this country.
    I’ll tell you, Richard.
    It’s because you don’t know what the hell you’re doing.

  30. Anonymous
    Posted February 24, 2008 at 9:18 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I actually think the show has gotten a lot better in the last year.

    I don’t think they need to radically change the format, just keep adjusting and tinkering with what they already have.

    Give it some more time. Let it evolve naturally. George is getting more comfortable, and more playful on air…

    My god, he’s even worn white.

  31. Kevin
    Posted February 24, 2008 at 8:39 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I almost completely agree with Allan on this one – George gives good interview, and a slightly longer live talk show (with the occasional band performance?) would be more interesting. Watching the show as it stands can be a bit frustrating as it often feels like the interviews are being cut all to hell. I’d keep the studio audience though.

  32. Anonymous
    Posted February 24, 2008 at 8:00 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    I can’t see the CBC ever allowing uncontroled comments from the audience.

  33. Allan
    Posted February 24, 2008 at 6:42 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    The Other Side of George … can be seen here.

  34. Anonymous
    Posted February 24, 2008 at 12:35 am | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    More stupid thoughts from “Allan” who has absolutely no idea what he is talking about. The Hour does a couple of funky interviews with rock stars and well known faces to bring in a younger demographic to brainwash – because its all the stuff between the funky interviews that is relevant to the corp. News with a spin packaged like a music video.

    “Allan” thinks a Larry King Live style program is original? Who’d watch it besides “Allan”? How does it fulfill the CBC’s mandate? George interviewing Canadian socialists like Suzuki and Elizabeth May?
    Brilliant idea “Allan” – so original.

    At least the existing format of The Hour allows them to bring in guests who aren’t Canadian liberals.

    Now if the advertising budget for The Hour was made available to production – oh wait, the CBC doesn’t produce anything, but if they did, that advertising budget would pay for “Allan’s” Larry King Live idea and about a dozen mini-series. Thank God Dick knows what he’s doing.

  35. Allan
    Posted February 23, 2008 at 9:09 pm | # | Reply to this masterpiece

    And yes, I took the picture.
    Today.
    Wouldn’t want anyone to think I was using stock footage.


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