Fox’s Shep Smith Steps On His Own Deck
In what has to be the Greatest Development in Teevee News since holographic Jessica Yellin asked Wolf Blitzer “What is thy bidding?” on election night 2008, here is Shepard Smith giving a tour of Fox’s brand-new “News Deck,” a wowie-zowie news set just dripping with ludicrously gigantoid “55-inch touchscreen displays” where Fox’s “information specialists” will sift through all sorts of breaking social-media thingies to find the real truth about what other reporters are tweeting about the latest YouTube video of a screencap from Fox News, ensuring that You The Viewer will spend most of the newscast trying to see if anybody in the background is watching porn.
Also, Shep Smith himself will control the action with a 38-foot interactive wall screen and a remote control — “We call it a remote. It has a technical name, but it’s boring” — that you just know he’s going to just set down somewhere on the way to the restroom and not remember where he put it.
The NewsDeck (it needs to be one word, don’t you think?) is the centerpiece of Smith’s new Fox News program “Shepard Smith Reporting” (3 PM daily), which I personally watched today, so you don’t have to. It looked a lot like a news program, plus Shep Smith walking up to one of the GigantoPads to share some severe weather news while muttering, “Shift-shift F10, shift-shift-F11.” Also, they’re sending Fox’s “veteran war correspondent Steve Harrigan” into some American urban areas, starting with New Orleans, to bring his special insights to the problem of all those scary black people who live there. “Wall to wall” shootings, Harrigan reports, perpetrated by a “new kind of shooter” who just cold sprays bullets everywhere with no regard for human life. Solid investigative journalism! Also, be very afraid.
We gave up before we could watch the report on the monster truck that barreled into a crowd, so we aren’t sure what insights the NewsDeck brought to that reportage.
We are looking forward to the inevitable re-creations of this set using iPads and ThunderCats action figures, and to the day when the Fox News team shows off how they have to put some real muscle into playing Angry Birds on those things. Not to mention the repetitive stress injury lawsuit from some poor information specialist who explains that they threw out their back scrolling through Reddit.
So now, the people putting together the news can be just as busy fucking around with their iPads as the viewers are. O brave new world!