The Critical 'I'

Read. React. Repeat.

Tuesday, June 01, 2004

CUTTING MISS AMERICA
You may recall the flop that was the 2003 Miss America Pageant. In an effort to halt the slide to irrelevance, and make for better television ratings, the spectacle of beauty will be trimmed down this year from three hours to two.
"In the reformatting of the show, they wanted and we wanted a faster-paced, hipper TV show, in keeping with today’s demands," [interim Miss America Organization CEO Art] McMaster said. "The three-hour show, honestly, dragged a little bit. We feel we can put on a better show in two hours."
This decision came directly from the network. If ABC is committed to running this fossil amid declining ratings, they're going to minimize the hole it'll swallow. I'll bet ABC was pushing for even less airtime, like 90 minutes or even an hour.

I'm reminded of some words of wisdom some financial analyst uttered back in the mid-'90s, when the business world was caught up in cutting back on employee numbers; it might've been Ken Favaro, I don't rightly remember:
"No company ever downsized its way to greatness".
I'm thinking this applies to the Miss America Pageant as well. This move is about survival, not reaching new heights.