Friday, July 5, 2013

Sally Quinn's CBS Morning Show Debacle in 1973

40 years ago CBS re-booted their long running but low rated morning show and it was a true debacle. See for yourself in these excerpts from the August 6, 1973 airing of the "CBS Morning News," it was an historic broadcast in some ways.

CBS was sick of losing mornings to Barbara Walters an the Today show so they brought in all of the CBS News heavy hitters to cover the morning stories and hired Sally Quinn from the Washington Post to put a softer, feminine face on the show. With little (or no) broadcast experience on her part, this move turned out to be an expensive and embarrassing flop for the network in '73.

For starters, ninety minutes before this live broadcast, Quinn collapsed from the flu. On screen she said weird things like, "that was how I felt when my mother and father made me clean up my room" after a report on the brutal conditions suffered by child migrant farm workers. 6 months later she was gone.

Note the seriousness of the program compared to the fluff that's airing today, there's a depth to the stories you would expect only from 60 Minutes now.

There's an interview of Pat Buchanan playing apologist for Richard Nixon who would resign almost exactly a year later. Also you'll get to see the iconic Iron Eyes Cody anti-polution ad.

More Classic TV fun at TVparty!