One Minute Of Truth With A Fox TV Executive
on 10/23/2005 (0)
In a rare, candid, unplugged interview with FOX Television CEO Jerry Albright, Albright has agreed to tell the truth to any questions asked to him for exactly one minute.
Smooth Op: "Good morning Mr. Albright. As per our arrangement, you have agreed to tell the truth to any questions asked to you for one minute. Are you good to go?"
Albright: "Sure, let's do it."
Smooth Op: "FOX has recently taken some hard criticism from religious groups as being the broadcast source for 60 percent of the shows deemed the most violent and controversial on television today. Do you agree?
Albright: "Well sure I agree. It is out intent. It's rough out there. We have to compete with the Internet, you know. We are losing share. We've had to turn the steam up, literally. If you watch shows like 'Family Guy', 'Cops', 'War at Home', 'Maury', and the various 'Judge X' shows, you can see and feel the heat very clearly. The only way we can get people coming back is by getting them jazzed and jangled and intrigued that way, through sheer antagonism. This is brutal Hollywood, you know, and we have to do what we have to do to survive."
Smooth Op: "But isn't free TV more than just ratings and advertising dollars? Doesn't TV have an affect on the American collective psychology, and the overall perception the world has of America as well?"
Albright: "Good one. Bravo. Truthfully, yes. There's more at play than ratings, of course, and a lot of that has to do with personal agenda. Let me make it clear that we are fully aware of the power we have over people who watch our shows. Most people who are obsessed with TV are not very bright, and it is a morbid, obsessive, narcissistic game with us to seize them by the throat and drag them around the block a few times. We revel in messing with people's heads, and laugh collectively at our 52nd floor parties when we see and describe how we are changing the belief system of Americans and molding the face of a new America as well. Hell yes, there is more to this than just ratings. It's also about sheer, Goebbels and Himmler propaganda like power."
Smooth Op: "T-That's insane...you won't get away with it. Someone will stop you..."
Albright: (laughs) "And just who? The FCC? We keenly understand what the legal limitations are on free broadcast networks, and we have cunningly learned how to skirt it. We have the best, most resourceful writers, you know. Look how Maury works. He can turn a show about deformed kids into a freak show and pass it off as a telethon at the same time. He plays the race card to a tee, and knows exactly how to press all the right buttons to get people railed into a frenzy, and yet still pass himself off as the protagonist. Same with 'War at Home', 'Tyra', 'Mad TV' and the various 'Judge X' shows. We've got Tim Green and 'Current Affair' in the seedy Tabloid TV arena as well. Did you know our average viewer considers 'Prison Break' a valuable public service message, and the cast of 'OC' as valid role models? We're not appealing to rocket scientists over here, you know. You know where the rocket scientists are? They're on the Internet. We are masters of our craft. We get what we need to get done, and still stay legal, period."
Smooth Op: "But what about responsibility? You and I both know how powerful media is in crafting the public mindset. 30 years ago, Johnny Carson would never have let television go in the direction it has gone today. Where are your ethics?"
Albright: "To hell with ethics, and to hell with Johnny Carson. I told you, we're on a power trip over here. That's the bigger part of it, o.k.? We've got a lot of people with minority agenda, and a big, big chip on their shoulder, and they want to let America take in in the mouth to get their point across. Ever watch 'American Dad'? How anti-government can you get? It pushes free speech
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