February 13, 2014 |
Pledge-break messages tend to be something that public television and radio audiences tolerate rather than welcome, but Steve Martin is riding to the rescue with a witty clip he shot for PBS stations to air during fundraising campaigns starting next month. “Hi, Steve Martin again,” he says at the top of the clip. “You know I'm not just asking you to make a pledge to PBS. I'm also asking my celebrity friends. Right now I'm going to text Tom Hanks, my big celebrity friend.” The response Martin reads when his cellphone dings isn't quite what stations look for, but the bit refreshingly avoids the stiff testimonials that typify these campaigns.
February 19, 2000
Re "Executive at CNN Taking Helm at PBS" (by Elizabeth Jensen, Feb. 7): I've watched KCET programming move progressively to the left, and with the naming of Pat Mitchell as president of PBS, that liberal bias appears likely to accelerate. The recent interview of President Clinton on the "NewsHour" exemplifies the liberal bias on PBS programs: a softball interview designed to provide a forum for Clinton to do what he does best--spin and lie. Obvious, tough follow-up questions were never asked.
July 24, 2005
Thanks to Robert Lloyd for a fun but well-written commentary about PBS ["PBS and Its Grand Ambitions," July 17]. I agree with his comments, especially regarding the "NewsHour." The only palpable left-leaning bias that existed on PBS was with Bill Moyers. Occasionally a leftward imbalance shows up on "Washington Week," but it isn't nearly as overbearing as it was until Mr. Moyers departed. However the issue I have with PBS isn't editorial as much as funding. I still don't understand why my tax dollars, which are taken by force of law, are needed to support entertainment television of any kind, especially when there is such a plethora of choices on the dial.
July 31, 2005
Reading Robert Lloyd's story about how public television ["PBS and Its Grand Ambitions," July 16] was created in 1967 as "a rebuke to free-market television" because the latter was depriving families of "a concert hall, a museum, a university, a forum," I was reminded of some of the schlock shows we peons of a certain age had to suffer through in front of our 19-inch screens when only three or four crassly commercial networks ruled. To name a few: Leonard Bernstein's "Young People's Concerts," Alistair Cooke's "Omnibus," "Playhouse 90," Rod Serling's "The Twilight Zone," David Susskind's "Open End."
September 20, 2013 |
"The Hollow Crown," which begins Friday on PBS under the venerable standard of its "Great Performances," comprises four Shakespeare plays, often called the Henriad as there is a King Henry (Henry IV, then Henry V) in each of them. It's too much to say that this is what television was made for - since it was also made for professional wrestling and situation comedies - but it is part of its original promise and compact, that ennobling great works of art (ennobling in their greatness, that is, not in any didactic way)
July 19, 2012 |
Fred Willard, arrested Wednesday night in Hollywood on suspicion of lewd conduct, has denied any wrongdoing. "With all due respect to the individual officer, our belief [is] that Fred did nothing in any violation of any law," lawyer Paul Takakjian said Thursday in a statement to L.A. Now . "We will be working vigorously to clear his name in this matter. " Willard, 72, was arrested by uniformed LAPD vice officers at the Tiki Theater on Santa Monica Boulevard. The actor was allegedly "engaged in a lewd act," according to Sgt. Chuck Slater, who did not elaborate. PHOTOS: Celebrity mug shots The "Best in Show" actor told a TMZ camera crew on Thursday that the arrest was "a big misunderstanding," "a strange situation" and "a difference of opinion.