Whither goest Keith Olbermann?
Though his separation agreement with MSNBC keeps Olbermann off TV for at least six months, it hasn’t stopped rampant speculation about the irascible ‘Countdown’ anchor’s next
field of battle place of employment.
Given his nuclear departures from ESPN, Fox Sports and MSNBC (twice), Olbermann’s choices may be limited. Regardless, one popular scenario making the rounds has him going to HBO, where he would create a weekly show to be paired with Bill Maher’s ‘Real Time.’
Premium cable — virgin territory for Olbermann — could end up being the perfect fit for the self-righteous leftie. His politics are compatible with those of Maher, albeit louder, taller and far less subtle.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if he [Olbermann] lands at HBO for 2012,” says fellow MSNBC exile David Shuster in an email. “He and Bill Maher would be an interesting combination. I would definitely watch, though I already watch Maher to begin with.”
Robert Thompson of Syracuse University’s Center for the Study of Popular Television, who describes Olbermann’s style as “news journalism in the jazz idiom,” is equally intrigued by the possibility of a tandem with Maher on HBO.
“It’s definitely do-able,” Thompson says. “HBO already has the model and slot to put him in. Olbermann might find it a relief to be on only once a week. And because HBO is not a news network, he wouldn’t always have to be ‘making a statement.’”
Also, with no pesky constraints on language, Olbermann’s “Special Comments” could spin into postal territory. It’s a location he visits frequently with management. To put it another