Sunday, July 23, 2006

Ghost of Promos Past

I’ve always held that TV news promos do NOT age well. However, I’m almost willing to issue an exception - having just watched an old KTVY spot featuring its many hotshot news shooters. It’s 29 seconds of cinematic brilliance. There’s the discount bin mid-seventies musical soundtrack, that fleeting glimpse of the world’s ugliest live truck - there’s even a inexplicable Hall and Oates cameo! Yes, this clip has everything ... If for no other reason, this 21 year old promo is worthy of time-capsule inclusion for its stilted summation of just what it is those scruffy photogs actually do, delivered in the patently paternalistic style of the times:
“Their purpose is to focus on the pictorial images that make the news clear to you”
Huh? “focus on the pictorial images?” Like I often bellow from an edit bay when laying footage over a line I crafted a few minutes earlier, “Who writes this crap?” Oh well, at least the lowly lenslingers of Oklahoma City circa 1985 got some well-deserved props. We're likely to see more of these gems surface as archivists everywhere shove their longheld bounty through the rickety series of tubes that is our internets. Thank you, Al Gore! Still, if my own promo gurus came to me with cameras rolling and a script as lousy as that, there’s only one thing I’d tell them...

“Get my good side, would ya?”

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