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The Awl Takes the Temperature of Doug Manchester’s U-T TV

First-time Awl contributor Thomas Larson has a solid feature about the history of the San Diego Union-Tribune and recent changes under the controversial new ownership of Doug Manchester.

His piece really finds its stride when he zeroes in on U-T TV, a broadcast channel spinoff that he believes is cut from the Fox News Channel cloth:

Come 6 a.m., it’s time for “Scott, B.R. + Amber,” a “live five-hour personality driven show with topical news, entertainment and captivating guests.” [FishbowlLA editor's note: The show is actually called FrontPage with Scott & Amber.] Scott is veteran shock jock, Scott Kaplan. B.R. is an ex-Chargers player, Billy Ray Smith. Amber Mesker, who is in her late 20s, is the only one with a degree in broadcast journalism.

Kaplan, not unlike the dimwits who surround Ron Burgundy in Anchorman (also set in “classy” San Diego), worked for Lynch on a morning radio show that was canceled a year ago because of sexist comments Kaplan made. (The reason for the firing, unexpectedly enough, gets a full airing on the U-T site.) Not surprisingly, in so far as any of them understands politics, the trio’s right-wing bias mirrors the owners.

Larson goes on to highlight some ill-conceived post-Newtown massacre coverage by the trio involving various punchlines about a local crime and the use of knives. The article author is a long-time staff writer for the San Diego Reader, author and also currently teaches writing at Ohio’s Ashland University. Read his full take here.

[Photo courtesy U-T TV]

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