Springer Pulls Plug on Radio
Yet another change on Clear Channel radio: Jerry Springer’s talk show is history. But it doesn’t have a lot to do with the Clear Channel bloodbath last week (firing 19 staffers), and everything to do with Springer’s seven weeks on "Dancing with the Stars."
Springer officially decided last Friday to pull the plug on his nationally syndicated radio show, which had lot about half of its affiliates. "Springer on the Radio" was carried by about two dozen stations, down from a peak of 53. Springer’s radio website was pulled down last Friday too.
Springer show producer Stephanie Tyler was told last Wednesday -- the day of the firings -- that she would be laid off when the show ended on Dec. 8. But she tells me she was NOT part of the 19 firings. Unlike the others, she's still working, has access to the building and email, she says.
Springer said he dumped radio for two reasons – it was too time-consuming, and he’d rather cash in on other opportunities from his national "Dancing with the Stars" exposure – a movie, possible Super Bowl commercial for Bud Light and maybe a recurring role on ABC’s "George Lopez" sitcom.
And maybe a third: He didn’t need it any more.
From our periodic conversations, I know Springer really loved doing radio because he could talk about serious issues seriously, as he did as a local Ch 5 news commentator in the 1980s. He saw talk radio it was a way to re-invent himself as a great liberal thinker, a platform from which he could possible re-enter politics someday.
Then came "Dancing with the Stars." The nation saw a different Jerry Springer – the disarmingly charming self-deprecating guy that won Cincinnati City Council terms in the 1970s – and that did rehabbing more for his image than two years of relative radio obscurity.
Springer might go back to radio when he cools off in
Whatever, a big hurdle has been cleared. He’s re-invented his image for many Americans. He’s now known as the funny guy from "Dancing with the Stars," not the host of what TV Guide called "The Worst Show in the History of Television." He's going from MTV's spring break to a Super Bowl commercial?
What will Bud Light have him do? Where will he show up next on TV? Any ideas or suggestions for him?