We’re watching MSNBC’s “Race for the White House,” the new show hosted by David Gregory.
6:00 pm: It begins. Gregory calls it “fast paced, the bottom line and every point of view in the room.”
6:01 pm: OMG. What the hell was that? The intro to Gregory’s show has him dancing all over the place and dodging red, white and blue graphics. It’s about as natural as Karl Rove’s MC Rove routine. This must be “Today” show Gregory.
6:02 pm: The goal: “Be smart, be faster and better than any campaign coverage around.” And a panel “that comes to play.” Tonight: Rachel Maddow, Gene Robinson, Chuck Todd and Joe Scarborough. Gee, what a unique, novel lineup for MSNBC. I mean, they’re never on.
6:02: Please stop the thrashing guitars in the background. Unless you get Scarborough to play them.
6:04 pm: Gregory’s smiling a lot. And, sometimes, it’s the visual equivalent of nails on a chalkboard. Looks like someone took an extra personality pill today. Will this be “serious, White House press briefing room David”? Or “Today” show David?
6:07 pm: The panel screen looks so much like ESPN’s Around the Horn.
6:09 pm: The orange background really brings out Gregory’s eyes. And his ambition. Both are equally piercing.
6:10 pm: Gregory invites you to “Play with the Panel.” Ooo, talk dirty to me, baby.
6:21 pm: It’s 6:21 and this has slowly turned into every other hour on MSNBC. We now miss the thrashing guitars.
6:22 pm: Oh wait. David Gregory says there will be some “smart takes” in the next segment. Beat that, “Tucker.”
6:23 pm: Seriously, I mean, my sensibilities aren’t offended, but how many times is MSNBC going to replay Tracy Morgan saying “Black is the new president, bitch” during daylight hours? The children, people!
6:26 pm: Oh no: He’s reading blogs. Please, someone stop the bleeding.
6:27 pm: Chuck Todd is now commenting on David Gregory’s reading of blogs. Break out the tourniquet. The logical next step must be talking about media coverage. It’s the only fish left to shoot in the bottom of this barrel.
6:31 pm: Somehow it wouldn’t surprise us if Mika Brzezinski suddenly showed up in the form of a video pop-up.
6:33 pm: No Shuster?
6:34 pm: Discuss amongst yourselves…Tucker was on “Hardball” at 5. How long until he appears on his show’s replacement?
6:36 pm: Gregory’s next brain fart: “Three questions: When I ask our panel to tackle the day’s toughest questions.”
Okay, so we have “Smart Takes” and “Three Questions” thus far. Was this show hatched on toilet paper during a morning constitutional?
6:43 pm: Gene Robinson is talking about a new car smell, a navigation system and surround sound and we’re totally confused. But somehow it involves Obama. How long until the Obama campaign asks Robinson to apologize? Because, as we all know, where Obama’s going, he doesn’t need any roads.
6:45 pm: Let’s give a shout out to the IT department for the show’s new ticker font. It’s a game-changer.
6:48 pm: For the final act, David Gregory will read reader feedback. He’s received “hundreds of emails,” 87 of which are nasty ones sent from fake email accounts set up by Tucker Carlson.
6:50 pm: David Gregory says he’s giving us a shot to play with the panel. Really? Okay. Let’s have at it:
I’d like to see Rachel Maddow dress up as Raggedy Ann, Joe Scarborough in a tickle booth, Gene Robinson as the voice behind an Avenue Q character and Chuck Todd switch facial hair with Wolf Blitzer.
6:58: The hat trick! Gregory’s going to ask the panel for — wait for it — predictions! I’ve seen the future and it is “Race for the White House.”
Gregory: “Gene, what does your crystal ball tell you tonight?” “Joe, what do you see?” “Chuck Todd, waddya got?”
Gavin: “Gag me with a spoon.”
6:59 pm: Chuck Todd makes NCAA predictions. It’s as Willie Geist as they get.
7:00 pm: Okay. So obviously we set out to be snarky. In reality, the show was fine (make of that what you will). The real question is (and we’ll know the answer when we look back on the ratings in a few weeks and months) “What makes this show unique” and “What sets this show apart from MSNBC’s normal programming and, more importantly, its competitors?”
To be continued…
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