TV Crush

Bill O'Reilly Siphons Sicko Viewers

5/21/2007 5:27 AM

Over the weekend, Michael Moore’s new film, Sicko, received a warm welcome at Cannes, according the Wall Street Journal. And the movie was positively reviewed by our sister publication, Variety.    But Newshounds reports that Internet users who type the words "sickofilm.com" or "sickomovie.com" into their browser’s address bar will find themselves transported instead to Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly’s website.

Whatever one thinks of Moore’s politics and occasional grandstanding,  O’Reilly and crew’s antics could garner O’Reilly yet another mention in Keith Olbermann’s Countdown: Worst Person in the World segment.

Cable News Sizzles with Christopher Hitchens

The Internet and cable news sizzled last week over remarks by the fearless and predictably controversial iconoclast, Christopher Hitchens. 

On CNN’s Anderson Cooper 360, Hitchens put to rest my Grandmother Finnigan’s adage "never speak ill of the dead" and shredded the legacy of Reverend Jerry Falwell. The next day, Hitchens sauntered over to the Fox News Hannity and Colmes’ den and shared the guest spot with Ralph Reed although the more genteel Reed hardly got a word in edgewise as Hitchens and Hannity sparred.

Murdoch Christian Kerfluffle

Lost in the Dow Jones news shuffle is this month’s big Christian kerfuffle over the porn that airs on Rupert Murdoch-owned BSkyB and elsewhere, like Direct TV (recently swapped to Malone’s Liberty Media).  The Christian Accountability Network shook up the Christian religious community when they issued a statement calling on Rick Warren  -  author of the best selling The Purpose-Driven Life,  published by Murdoch-owned Zondervan -  to spank Murdoch and/or boot him from Saddleback, the southern California mega-church  pastored by Warren. Saddleback sevices have aired on Fox News and the church has been heavily featured on the channel.

The problem, according to Saddleback’s Chief of Staff: Murdoch isn’t a member of Saddleback and has never visited the church.

However, the remarks which have bounced back to haunt and give Christians reason to believe that Warren wields some authority date back to a 2005 New Yorker piece about Warren and Saddleback.

"I had dinner with Jack Welch last Sunday night," Warren said. "He came to church, and we had dinner. I’ve been kind of mentoring him on his spiritual journey. And he said to me, ‘Rick, you are the biggest thinker I have ever met in my life. The only other person I know who thinks globally like you is Rupert Murdoch.’ And I said, ‘That’s interesting. I’m Rupert’s pastor! Rupert published my book!’"

Tidbit:  If every ad was as cool as the Derek Jeter/Harvey Keitel Gatorade spot - Stealin’, it’s a beautiful thing - the industry wouldn’t have to worry about ad skipping.

March