You think the three television networks are the same? Not so! Last year’s Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade was broadcast by NBC and this year CBS got the job. What a difference a network makes!
So yes, the Angry Birds have every reason to be angry. Last year, NBC shot the parade on Broadway against the backdrop of its great traditional skyscrapers (see my “Thanks for this parade“). This year, CBS placed its anchor booth to assure that glass-box modern architecture was the primary backdrop. How boring! Hope the Angry Bird float did not show its anger by pooping on the crowd!
The Angry Bird should defecate on the NBC producers. Although the anchors expostulated repeatedly that the weather for the parade was fine, it looked gray to television viewers. This was no doubt because the glass boxiness of the backdrop played such havoc with reflected sunshine that the producers forced the cameramen to use filters that grayed out the beautiful blue sky (if we can believe the anchors).
Of course, there was very little parade on the CBS broadcast of the parade. It was mainly interviews with boring stars of CBS shows, or cutting away to bad music by bad singers filmed off site or studio commercials for other bad CBS shows. And of course cutting to the regular commercials. I fast-backwarded to the Angry Bird float segment because my little boy, Billy, who was dutifully viewing the parade with me, is an Angry Birds fanatic. Then I fast-forwarded back to where we were in the parade. When you “roll the tape” fast you see more clearly how much of the broadcast is fluff. Like the cutesie actress who informed us that she grew up with a photo of Tom Selleck over her family toilet. More than I want to know; maybe more than Tom wants to know!
Ah, those CBS producers. Maybe they’ll get a Pritzker Prize for this year’s parade broadcast. Aargh! Thanksgiving indeed. Tonight I’ll give thanks that this year’s CBS broadcast of the Macy’s parade is over and pray that next year it will be back in the reliable hands of NBC. Happy Thanksgiving!
(News flash: Later this afternoon I discovered that NBC had also aired a broadcast of the parade, starting at around 4 p.m. I had thought CBS had somehow got the gig this year. Both networks did. NBC’s broadcast this year had the same backdrops as last year. And now I learn from Kristen Richards of ArchNewsNow.com that NBC’s afternoon broadcast was a rerun of its live morning broadcast of the parade. And now Will Morgan informs me that the top screenshot is not Broadway but 6th Avenue.)
[Thanks to Gayle Gertler for correcting my erroneous citation of Burt Reynolds as the actor whose picture graces Actress X’s family toilet.]
[This post was originally sent around noon on Thanksgiving. It has been delayed because my email server suddenly believes, in its wisdom, that my bulk delivery is spam. I hope you will get it, late being better than never.]