Toxic Ratings Bomb 'Murphy Brown' Longs for Days of Walter Cronkite

Week after week, the far-left Murphy Brown revival continues to plummet in the ratings for CBS. The most recent episode, airing December 13, featured the out-of-touch journalist characters longing for the days of only three networks when Walter Cronkite could turn public opinion against the war in Vietnam. 

According to the Hollywood Reporter, “Murphy Brown hit a season low in adults 18-49 in ratings,” managing a paltry 0.7 ratings in the 18-49 demo. This episode coincided with character “Frank Fontana” (played by Joe Regalbuto) telling a millennial reporter about the good old days: 

 

 

Listen, when CBS sent Cronkite to Vietnam, it changed the course of the war. He came back, went on the air in front of 40 million people, and told the country we were losing. LBJ  heard that. He said, "Look, if I've lost Cronkite, I've lost Middle America," and that started the pullout. That's the kind of impact a journalist can have.

This journalist wasn’t just anybody. It was Murphy Brown’s disillusioned son Avery (played by Jack McDorman). In the previous episode, he quit his job at the Wolf network, a thinly disguised Fox News. 

Viewing his replacement tout the Trump tax cuts, Avery raged: 

 

 

Oh, please! You know what? If he's gonna steal my show and my persona and my beard and my glasses, at least don't let him spout propaganda like it's fact. Fantastic tax cut? Yeah, right. More like imaginary tax cut. Am I right? 

This show is painfully unfunny. “Jokes” seem to be replaced with characters who sound like talking New York Times op-eds. On November 28, the Hollywood Reporter announced the revival had been cancelled. The show’s creator, Diane English, disputed this, saying she “looks forward to a second season.”

However, it’s not clear how much farther the sitcom can plummet in the ratings. The “season finale” on December 20 will feature cameos by liberal MSNBC journalists Lawrence O’Donnell and Andrea Mitchell. These two might not be enough to crack the 0.7 ratings barrier. 

A partial transcript is below: 

Murphy Brown
12/13/18
9:32 p.m. Eastern

"MARK CLARK" (Zachary Storey): I'm here at Ricks' Woodworking in Sioux City, Iowa, with Aaron Ricks. Aaron, how excited are you about the fantastic 10% tax cut the President is promising the middle class?

“AVERY” (Jack McDorman): Oh, please! You know what? If he's gonna steal my show and my persona and my beard and my glasses, at least don't let him spout propaganda like it's fact. Fantastic tax cut? Yeah, right. More like imaginary tax cut. Am I right? 

(....)

"MURPHY BROWN" (Candice Bergen): Resources to track him? Twenty years ago, we would have, but nowadays, we mostly have to depend on freelancers. 

“FRANK FONTANA” (Joe Regalbuto): Back then, all the networks had bureaus all over the world, staffed with reporters who knew the territory and had Rolodexes just filled with contacts. 

“MILES SILVERBERG” (Grant Shaud): When I came on, they had just moved news into the entertainment division. Those bureaus weren't "Cost-effective" anymore. Yeah, that's right. 

FONTANA: Listen, when CBS sent Cronkite to Vietnam, it changed the course of the war. He came back, went on the air in front of 40 million people, and told the country we were losing. LBJ  heard that. He said, "Look, if I've lost Cronkite, I've lost Middle America," and that started the pullout. That's the kind of impact a journalist can have.

NBDaily CBS Video Walter Cronkite Candace Bergen
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