Slate Wonders if Daytime Talk Shows Are Over


Everyone, including yours truly, has chimed in on whether or not the soap genre, like BP’s good reputaion, is a thing of the past. Now,  has published an essay questioning if daytime talk shows are out like a jheri curl, since Tyra Banks decided to pull the plug on her own gab-fest.  
Part of the shift away from talk shows has to do with the rise of reality TV, which began to take over the televised confessional in the early aughts. These new shows offered revelations, drama, and an opportunity for the viewing audience to judge without a host shaping the proceedings. Plus, with reality shows you get to watch these individuals for several episodes. "People are hungry to see people grow and change over the years," says Dominick Pupa, who worked as a producer on the Jenny Jones, Ricki Lake, and Maury Povich shows, explaining the appeal of shows like the Real Housewives series.


6 Responses

  1. Profile photo of sodsince16

     To be honest I may be more of a fan of daytime talk than daytime drama.  Not the current crop of aliens.  Dinah, Merv, Mike Douglas, and Regis are the ones that I think of when I think daytime talk.  They were class acts who brought dignity to the home viewer, they never talked down to their audience (I’m talking to you Bonnie Hunt), and they were very entertaining shows.

    The problem today is – Who would be the guests on these shows?  There have been 200 Top-20 contestants on American Idol, too many Bachelors and Bachelorettes to count, and millions of cast offs from other shows.  Soon, Warhol’s fifteen minutes of fame will be expanded to – In the future everyone will be on VH1, Bravo or TLC for 15 minutes.

     None of those "reality stars" are people whom I wish to see interviewed.  They have already spread their stories for fame, they don’t need to be interviewed.

    Give me a good cooking segment with Dom Deluise teaching Dinah how to make fettuccine from Spago and I will be happy man.

    Do I mourn the loss of the current crop?   No (except of course for Oprah but she is in another realm)  Do I mourn the loss of glamorous people built for an 8 minute segment (like Charo who never actually released a CD) ? – Yes, but now that anyone can be famous it is loosing its status.

  2. Profile photo of Dariclone

    We live in hope.
    Seriously though, I think a lot of the current crop of talkshows are tired. We don’t need another host welcoming the same celebrities, asking the same questios and getting the same answers.
    I’m really looking forward to Rosie O’Donnell’s show as it’s going to be an "issues show" dealing with different topics for a solid hour and not five minute soundbites.
    I think if talkshows rreally want to gain new viewers they need to evolve and look behind the same old format they are used to.
    Now if only we could convince network execs of this and get them to quit cancelling perfectly  good soap operas for stuff no one will watch anyway.

  3. Profile photo of craigcp

    I hope shows like Jerry Springer are dead. Is it still on the air? They don’t show it hear in Kansas; if you want to go really back, I hope I never see shows like Phil Donahue. that crap has finally run it’s course, they beat that to death back in the ’80’s and ’90’s.

  4. Profile photo of alstonboy4315

    Talk shows aren’t dead…….and people like TRASH. How else to explain Wendy Williams’ show still being on the air??? Talk shows give daytime viewers something that soaps don’t—celebrities who gossip about their lives, Whoopi Goldberg, Ellen and Joy Behar (but not necessarily in that order!)

    Talk shows that are centered around boring hosts who have no personality (like Bonnie Hunt) are destined to fail every time, but if you get a group of women together who all have explosive personalities, (like with "The View") then you have a recipe for success.

    It is the same concept with talk shows as with any other form of entertainment—if you entertain the people, they’ll come back for more. If not, CANCELLATION CITY!!!

  5. Profile photo of ldylkng

    I want my soaps!
    The only talk show I will watch is the View!
    Have no interest in game shows or anything else. People watch to be taken away from their daily probs So what if I’m not in the 18 to 49 age group. Seniors are the fastest gowing population and have more diposable income. Where are these idiots getting their info. Nielson is so out of date.

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