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Posts Tagged ‘John Oliver’

John Oliver…the Journalist?

OliverThe Associated Press’ David Bauder writes about HBO satirist John Oliver‘s comedy show venturing into new and unknown territory—investigative journalism.

His 15-minute Miss America segment began with jokes about how dated a beauty pageant seems, and his incredulity at some of the questions contestants are asked. He took some shots at Donald Trump, who owns a competing pageant. Then he zeroed in on the Miss America organization’s claim of making $45 million in scholarship money available to young women each year. “Forty-five million,” Oliver said. “That is an unbelievable amount of money. As in, I literally did not believe that.” His staff researched documents, finding a federal disclosure form that said the pageant spent $482,000 in scholarships in 2012. They researched tax forms on statewide pageants, finding several scholarship offers that couldn’t possibly be awarded at the same time were added together to help reach the final figure. In other words, people shouldn’t confuse money that may be available with money spent.That’s journalism, minus any apparent attempt to let pageant officials offer their side. The organization subsequently issued a statement not specifically addressing Oliver’s charge that Miss America was being misleading, but said that “as with any scholarship, the full amount awarded may not always be used as recipients plans change or evolve.

Bauder reports Oliver has former New York Times and ProPublica journalists writing on his “Last Week Tonight” staff. At the TVNewser Show in April, Fox News’ Bret Baier lauded Oliver for his coverage of India’s elections. “After I saw that, I said ‘we are dropping the ball on that coverage,’” Baier told us. Oliver’s investigation into the Miss America Pageant after the jump.

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John Oliver’s New Take on the News-Comedy Genre

John OliverVariety examines how HBO’s “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver” fits into the news-comedy landscape, concluding that Oliver’s show is “shaking up the genre anew, providing a sort of investigative journalism that is not seen in any of the other comedy-news hybrids on the air”:

In recent weeks, Oliver has presented a segment lasting than 13 minutes on the “net neutrality” debate and one of more than 16 minutes about the troubles of dietary supplements pitched by luminaries such as Dr. Oz. He eviscerated FIFA, the governing body behind the World Cup, in a bit lasting 13 minutes and 14 seconds, according to a video posting from HBO on YouTube.

How different are Oliver’s content pieces? The typical segment on the often hard-hitting “60 Minutes” typically comes in between 11 minutes and 13 minutes, according to a spokesman for the CBS newsmagazine. Producers at “Last Week Tonight,” declined through an HBO spokeswoman to comment.

“I see Oliver as the next logical extension of the genre,” said Dannagal Young, an assistant professor at the University of Delaware who studies the use of political satire. Oliver, she said, “is going beyond traditional satire to give audience members specific directives that allow them to take action on the issues he deconstructs on the show.”

At the TVNewser Show in April, Fox News’ Bret Baier praised Oliver for his coverage of the elections in India: “After I saw that, I said ‘we are dropping the ball on that coverage.’ And it’s something that people, I think, need to know about, just for the betterment of us,” he said.

White House Correspondents’ Dinner Leftovers

If you were busy watching “Dateline” or “48 Hours” Saturday night, and missed the 2014 White House Correspondents Association dinner, we’ve got a few highlights. Here’s the video shown during the dinner of the VP and the Veep, Joe Biden and Julia Louis-Dreyfus, with acknowledgements of David Gregory and Chuck Todd.

The WHCA also commissioned a video to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the organization, produced, appropriately, by the History Channel with a voiceover from ABC’s Diane Sawyer.

And for dessert, John Oliver has his take on the night, as seen on last night’s “Last Week Tonight.”

“The main purpose of the evening,” Oliver says, “seems to be providing photos of glamorous celebrities completely unaware of who they are standing next to.” WATCH: Read more

Bret Baier: ‘After I Saw that, I Said ‘We Are Dropping the Ball on that Coverage’

BaierTVSBret Baier is taking a cue from John Oliver.

The Fox News “Special Report” host was watching Oliver’s inaugural show on HBO last Sunday when it hit him that the world’s biggest election — where up to 800 million people in India will be voting — is getting almost no coverage in the U.S. “After I saw that, I said ‘we are dropping the ball on that coverage,’ Baier told us at the TVNewser Show on Tuesday. His team is now working on a story about the election which wraps up May 12.

Baier says shows like Oliver’s as well as “The Daily Show” and “The Colbert Report,” “can really penetrate on news stories.”

We interviewed Baier for about 20 minutes following his keynote speech. We discussed everything from the 2014 and 2016 elections, to how he engages with “the most fervent critics of Fox News,” and the current state of the media’s relationship with the White House: “I think there is a sense that the president feels like he doesn’t get enough good treatment in a media that has, for the most part, turned a little bit on this White House, in policy and substance.”

I began by asking Baier what he thought about the president’s approval rating, which an ABC News/Washington Post poll released earlier that morning showed it had dropped to 41%.

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The Ticker: Fuse, Oliver, Tapper

  • Fuse News, which was initially produced by former ABC, CBS, and CNN executive Rick Kaplan, has been cancelled. “We reached an agreement to sell Fuse to SiTV Media, and these changes are part of that transition,” a spokesperson tells TVNewser.

  • New HBO host John Oliver tells The Daily Beast covering cable news is like absorbing poison, and CNN perplexes him. “What CNN are doing at the moment is more baffling to me. At least Fox are efficient at what they’re trying to do…I find that whole world very dispiriting.”

  • CNN’s “The Lead with Jake Tapper” will air Tapper’s interview with former President George W. Bush this afternoon. Tapper will speak with the former president about veterans’ issues.

The Ticker: CNN, Biz Nets, Oliver

  • TV news analyst Andrew Tyndall pens a column in The Hollywood Reporter about CNN’s wall-to-wall coverage of MH370. Although the coverage “has been vindicated by increased ratings,” Tyndall notes it was not without its drawbacks: “Too often [CNN] abandoned actual journalism — reporting events known to have happened — to engage in speculative discussion of increasingly cockamamy theories (black holes?) about what happened inside the plane.”

  • In an ad airing on CNBC’s “Squawk Box” this week, Maria Bartiromo is urging viewers to “come on over” to her new Fox Business show. The ad is a “change of address card” for Bartiromo, FBN EVP Kevin Magee tells Variety.

  • As former “Daily Show” correspondent John Oliver prepares to launch his fake HBO news show, he tells The Washington Post that the real cable news channels have become like “ADD children, banging around from story to story then returning to their main story, which is where the [Malaysia Airlines] plane is. They’ve basically become like news jazz. It’s the stories they don’t tell; that’s what you’re really supposed to be listening to.”

John Oliver Doesn’t Want CNN’s Slogan

The trailer for former “Daily Show” correspondent John Oliver‘s new HBO show “Last Week Tonight” is out, and Oliver brushes off the suggestion he use CNN’s long-term slogan.

“John Oliver…the most trusted name in news,” the trailer’s narrator says. “That’s CNN’s slogan,” Oliver shot back, seeming uninterested in stealing CNN’s thunder.

“The most relied upon name in news,” the narrator tried. “That’s a synonym,” Oliver again disapproved.

This isn’t the first time Oliver has joked at CNN’s expense: last summer, while filling in for Jon Stewart on “The Daily Show,” Oliver mocked “New Day’s” “rock block” segment for having rock music playing while reporting “unrocking” news like Pentagon department cuts and new cancer study information.

“Last Week Tonight” premieres April 27 at 11pmET on HBO.

The Ticker: Oliver, Webb, Pena

  • Former “Daily Show” correspondent John Oliver‘s upcoming HBO show now has a name and premiere date. The half-hour “Last Week Tonight” premieres April 27 at 11pm.

  • Fox News contributor David Webb is adding political columnist to his portfolio. The longtime radio host will write a bi-weekly column for “The Hill” published every other Wednesday.

  • With NBCLatino.com shutting down, Executive Editor Chris Pena has been named senior EP for MSNBC weekends. His new role starts Friday.

The Evening Ticker: Oliver, Delgado, Davies

  • John Oliver is leaving “The Daily Show” for HBO where he will host his own weekly program. The Sunday evening show will be a topical comedy series debuting in 2014.

  • Jennifer Delgado is joining The Weather Channel as a meteorologist based out of Atlanta. Delgado comes from CNN International and CNN domestic.

The AM Ticker: Tennis, FNC, Rock

  • Some of Washington’s most notable journalists played tennis against the people they cover last night at the Washington Kastles Charity Classic. Bret Baier, David Gregory, Ed Henry and Jon Karl laced up against members of Congress and Ambassadors.

  • On “The Daily Show,” John Oliver took aim at CNN “New Day”‘s “Rock Block” segment, which has news headlines and kickin’ beats. As he discovered, Americans apparently love to get their news with a pop accompaniment nowadays. Watch below.

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