Monday, December 29, 2008

So Long Angela...and---Mosey

Friday (December 26th) was Angela Russell's last day on the 4 o'clock broadcast at CBS-3. According to Marnie Hall of's short-term plan is to spend time with her family. Natasha Brown (from Philly 57's "Wake UP News") filled in on the broadcast today.
Another, whose contract was not renewed -- former Action News weather-caller Sally Ann Mosey who went on to New York's WNBC. Mosey was among four on-air types who are being shown the door. No word on whether Mosey has any irons in the fire.

1/9/09 UPDATE: If you're a frequent viewer of Eyewitness News at 4 p.m. you've seen Natasha Brown in the co-anchor seat next to Chris May. I hear Brown is a strong contender for the "promotion". Time will tell whether she's a permanent replacement for the departed Russell.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Up-and-coming Uhler

Channel 10 has a sprouting blossom on their hands in Jameson Uhler. Uhler has been seen anchoring on a fill-in basis for the weekend evening broadcasts as well as pairing with the polished Lori Wilson of the "10 Show" for the early morning "NBC 10 News Today". Uhler has demonstrated himself to be an accomplished reporter and with his anchoring under his belt definitely has anchoring in his future in my opinion. Hopefully, Channel 10 will pair him on the ten o'clock "MY PHL News at 10" to give him a start.


This morning's freezing rain proved not only a challenge to area drivers during the overnight--but to FOX 29, NBC10 and Philly 57.
The area roadways began to ice over by 11 p.m. when early reports indicated icy conditions. By midnight--traffic reports indicated a handful of problem areas...however, by 1 a.m. the damage was done and major highways were seeing shut-downs due to numerous accidents.
FOX 29's morning team was unaccounted for by air-time at 5 a.m. for "Good Day Philadelphia". Street reporter Steve Keeley and new traffic reporter Jamie Shupak ended up carrying the show for John Anderson, Sheinelle Jones and Sue Serio, not doing a bad job either! The ice was "personal" for Steve Keeley who fell on his way out the door--injuring his left arm and elbow and feeling the pain during the broadcast. Serio, being the trooper she is, did her weather reports over the phone from her home in Media/Delaware county and reyling on an in-house producer to create the needed weather graphics for the broadcast. With the shortage of not having Keeley on the street, there must have been a shortage of behind-the-scenes staff as well as the show seemed to be airing more "fluff pieces" this morning than usual.
Over at NBC10--Jameson Uhler and Lynn Berry anchored "NBC10 News Today" for the vacationing Terry Ruggles. However, god-awful fill-in traffic reporter Jane Laychak was M.I.A., I'm told due to the road conditions as well. Uhler and Barry covered the traffic nightmare over PennDot camera shots of the various accidents and road closures. Street reporter Justin Pizzi was also trapped--on the westbound Schuylkill Expressway (I-76) from a multi-vehicle accident at I-476 that closed that portion down about 2 a.m. leaving Pizzi parked along with Penndot salt trucks ahead of him, unable to do their jobs. Pizzi did live reports from his cell phone for the morning broadcast.
Philly 57 wasn't spared either. "Wake UP News" didn't make it to air due to "technical difficulties" I'm told..."a combination of being Christmas eve--but mainly due to the fact that crews assigned to work the show were unable to make it to the TrafficPulse headquarters in Chesterbrook", according to a source I spoke with at KYW. The station ended up simulcasting "Eyewitness News" on channel 57. Liz Keptner and Lesley Van Arsdall (filling in for the vacationing Ukee Washington) held down the fort with Stephanie Humphrey filling in for the vacationing Bob Kelly.
Meanwhile, at Channel 6 during the 7:55 a.m. "Good Morning America" local cut-in, David Murphy was outside doing his usual weather break when directly behind him along City Avenue, an accident happened live on the air. One vehicle slid into another waiting at the traffic light at Monument Road. Murphy acknowledged the accident as a "live visual of conditions out-and-about". Otherwise, Channel 6 was pretty much unaffected by the road issues.
On the radio side--it's noted that on KYW 1060 "newsradio", traffic announcer Tom Collins, who goes on at 6 p.m. and normally ends his shift at 1 a.m. for overnight guy, Mike Lankford--was still on the air doing the 2:52 a.m. traffic report. Lankford must also have had difficulty getting in for his shift as well since it's noted he was heard on-air doing the 3:32 a.m. traffic segment.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

NBC 10 Review

NBC 10 debuted their new set and HD newscasts this past Wednesday (12/10). I've watched every newscast since and have a few thoughts.
*The set itself is great. Big improvement over the previous set they've used since 1999. Not sure what the big deal is about the "open anchor desk" and all the fuss made about that...but overall, "good stuff".
*I was disappointed the weather set wasn't overhauled. Looks good, think they could've done better by sprucing it up...
*Hoping the large "NBC10" boxed graphic to the side of the anchor desk mounted on the wall is temporary...much like when channel 6 debuted their set with a "Action News" graphic plastered to the front of the desk. What I'm getting at is I'm hoping we'll soon see a large plasma monitor in place of the graphic picture there now. Otherwise, this is a big mistake in my opinion. If there was a large monitor there--it could be used to toss to stories and live reports.
*Like how the background skyline duratrans goes from light orange in the mornings to blue for the rest of the day. Guess it would be asking too much for a dark shot with the skyline somehow hightlighted with light...
*Obviously, they don't yet have their field cameras lined up for HD yet. Guess that's on the way...
*Love the new weather graphics...hoping they can continue to be more creative in using them...
*The traffic set looks much outdated compared to the new set...
*SPEAKING OF TRAFFIC--they gotta dump this fill-in JANE LAYCHAK! This woman is god-awful...and not even worthy of being on-air in DES MOINES let alone PHILADELPHIA...she has no idea what she's talking about and is like a deer caught in head lights. AWFUL, AWFUL, AWFUL!
*Love the new transitions and theme music too

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Blast from the past...

There's a new voice anchoring the news on KYW 1060 these days. It's none other than former traffic guy John Valerio heard recently on the all-news outlet. Valerio called the traffic from SmartTraveler for Channel 6 up until early '07 when he was replaced by Karen Rogers. Until his KYW gig--Valerio had his hands in the real estate business.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Low Likeability + Difficult...

I'm hearing the real reason John Ogden at NBC-10 is out the door and it *wasn't* by his "own choice". He is apparently not an easy one to work with, I'm told; and over the past two years it's become an issue for management at TrafficPulse.
In addiiton, I'm told he was shown the door because he has a "low likeability quotient" the past year.
Channel 10 has been in the ratings basement behind 6 and 3 and are trying to revamp themselves on-air and give themselves a new start in the traffic department. Ogden is an employee of TrafficPulse but Channel 10 powers-that-be have the final say on whether he stays or goes. The decision was finally made that he go and December 19th is his last day.
Ogden was quoted in one of the local papers this past week as saying it is an ammicable departure for him to pursue other interests. Best of luck...

NBC10 Goes HD

NBC-10 has announced they will debut their new set and flip the HD switch on all newscasts beginning Wednesday December 10th (get it? channel 10--December 10th) on the 4 o'clock newscast.
During the 5 o'clock "All That & More" and 11 p.m. newscast yesterday--LouAnn Cahn of the NBC-10 Investigators did a clever "investigative report" on rumors of "some exciting things happening at 10 these days". She "made attempts" at interviewing News Director Chris Blackman and the station General Manager who "denied anything was going on". She "made an attempt" to enter the NBC-10 News studio but was "banned entrance by two security men". She then interviewed a "disguised source" wearing a bowtie, a large solid black circle superimposed over his face and his voice altered (sounding like one of the chipmunks) who fessed up that he had been moved to the hallway these last 4-1/2 months, that "it's crazy..." and that the new set would debut Wednesday. Cahn then "interviewed" Tim Lake from his newsroom desk who stated "you'll be able to see my legs now" (illustrating that the desk will be an open-type desk) as he lifted one pant leg to reveal his somewhat solid/hairy leg. Cahn seemed a bit taken aback and went on from there.
The report ended with a fast glimpse of the studio revealing at least one large stone wall...and the anchor desk positioned where the walls meet to form a corner of the studio...and a large backdrop of Center City behind.
All-in-all a creative and interesting way to present the debut date.

Friday, December 5, 2008


...Harry Martin from WPVI-TV's "Action News"? Martin served as a general assignment reporter and weather anchor back in the mid 80's and went on to WTNH-TV in New Haven, CT. Martin didn't settle in Connecticut, however. He went on to the big leagues at ABC's flaship station--WABC-TV in New York, then to WNYW-TV the FOX affiliate in New York and finally settled in his current weekday anchor post at WWOR-TV the My Network TV affiliate there. Martin began his career in Lancaster, PA at WLYH-TV.
For fun--I've dipped into the video archives for a look at a weathercast from New Year's eve 1986 on the 11 p.m. "Action News".