Q: I’ve given up on local news out of frustration. Does every newscast have to begin with the weather? I know viewers like to know if it’s going to rain in the next few days, but we don’t need a lesson in meteorology every day.
Some stations must have more meteorologists on staff than investigative reporters. What an informed citizenry we would have if the news went into as much detail about politics and government, the sciences, social issues or the arts.
I would love to see one local channel give a weather forecast in one minute and devote the remaining time to worthwhile issues.
A: Many local TV stations have more forecasters than investigative reporters.
Weather is what viewers want and what they will watch. Local news outlets once saw themselves as a public service that would give viewers what they need to be “an informed citizenry,” but those days are long gone. Now it’s just about the bottom line. So stations program their newscasts based on what will get ratings, and weather is most likely to do that.
In some sense, viewers might be getting the newscast they deserve based on their viewing habits.
U.S. ‘Top Gear’ returns this week
Q: Is the American “Top Gear” coming back?
A: Yes, it premieres at 8 p.m. Tuesday.
No word on next season of ‘Rake’
Q: Has Season 3 of the Australian series “Rake” started yet? Will it be available on any channels viewable in the United States? The previous shows were available on DirecTV.
A: DirecTV publicist Cara Brugnoli didn’t answer e-mail or phone requests for a response.
DirecTV did air the first two seasons of “Rake” — which is being remade by Fox and starring Greg Kinnear for 2014 — and the show was renewed for a third season in Australia. But there has been no announcement about Season 3 airing here. Season 2 was released on DVD in the United States in July.
‘Bomb Patrol’ left behind by G4
Q: Will there be a new season of “Bomb Patrol Afghanistan” on the G4 network?
A: G4 will transition to the Esquire Network by late September. There are no plans for that program to continue on G4 or Esquire.
‘Southland’ killed by low ratings