I like smart women in television news. That is why I admire Gwen Ifill, and Judy Woodruff. It is also why I got up extra early this Sunday morning and made coffee (something I am not supposed to drink) in order to watch “This Week” with Christiane Amanpour. I was mighty pleased with what I saw. With style, professionalism, and insight Christiane Amanpour is about to make “This Week” must see Sunday morning television.
There is nothing like a truly substantive person in charge of a program with the heft that “This Week” carries. Before I go further, I need to be up-front with my readers. While I was a faithful fan of the ABC broadcast when David Brinkley was the host, and also when Sam Donaldson and Cokie Roberts shared duties, I never watched when George Stephanopoulos anchored the broadcast. I like the stalwarts of journalism to be in the role of anchor for the Sunday morning talk shows. I grew up that way, and am not in the mood to change. So it was a pleasure to grind coffee beans (chocolate raspberry) and await Christiane Amanpour’s air time.
Christiane Amanpour has the credentials to talk about international affairs with the best educated minds in the field. She can also dice and slice to get to the core of the essential political news. Having said that I was hoping for more ‘tenth paragraph’ type questions. In other words, probing into matters that are often buried in the newspapers, but which matter to policy-makers, and those who care about the issues. Amanpour is well versed on matters that are complex and inter-related, and I hope that her show will be able to rise to her level, and at the same time bring her audience along. If that is done the show will have high ratings, and the public will be better informed.
I trust there will be more time alloted for intelligent guests to elongate their responses. Dropping the last several minutes of the show where the deaths of the week were noted, late-night talk show laughs regurgitated, and a picture of the week bounced on the screen could be better used for actual content.
The segues between topics in the roundtable discussion need to be worked on as they were anything but seamless, but this is a first show and my critical view about this matter really not important. It is just one of the elements I take note of in a geeky type of way, and just hope it improves over time.
What I loved, and I suspect many did not, is the use of Amanpour’s glasses as more a prop than an enhancement for sight. She slipped them on and off for more of an effect than for anything else. While biting on a rim made for a snapshot to be used in upcoming promotional spots for the show, I am sure that there will be those who find the glasses a distraction. Without demeaning her professionalism in any way, I thought the glasses made an already beautiful woman even more sexy.
Time will tell if the glasses remain a part of the broadcast. I know I plan to make Christiane Amanpour a part of my Sunday morning routine. The coffee most likely will not.