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John Kiesewetter on the world of local and national TV

Senior Entertainment Reporter John Kiesewetter has been covering TV and media issues for 20 years. After joining the Cincinnati Enquirer in 1975 as a summer intern, he worked as a county government and suburban reporter; assistant city editor and suburban editor; and features editor supervising the Life section. He has a B.S. in journalism from Ohio University.

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Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Rachel Horn and Viewers in Jeopardy

Good news and bad news for Jeopardy fans: Rachel Horn from Walnut Hills High School plays in the $75,000 "Jeopardy!" teen tournament Thursday -- but you won't see it on Channel 9 Thursday.

Because of a prior commitment to air the "Cincinnati Auto Show" 7-8 p.m. Thursday, Channel 9 will pre-empt the first night of the two-night teen tournament. (Whoops!) Channel 9 made the agreement months ago, before it learned that Jeopardy had scheduled the teen tournament... or knew that the 15-year-old Hyde Park girl would make it to the finals...

So here's your viewing options:
--Wait until 7 p.m. Friday, and watch the two-part finals 7-8 p.m. Friday on Channel 9. (They'll pre-empt "Wheel of Fortune," and run back-to-back "Wheels" 7-8 p.m. Saturday.
--Set the DVR for 1:35 a.m. late Thursday/early Friday and record the Thursday Jeopardy. Make sure to give yourself extra time, since the show runs until 2:05 a.m.
--If you're in the northern 'burbs, you might be able to watch Jeopardy from Dayton's Channel 2 at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, as usual.

Horn was impressive again Wednesday, though not nearly as dominant as she was in the first round. She answered 16 of 17 correctly, while last week she took control of the game by answering 28 questions. She started the Double Jeopardy (second round) in second place, but quickly jumped into the lead thanks to a category of Ohio trivia (called "Let's Go To Ohio"). Can you believe it? They used this category knowing they had an Ohio kid playing the game? One of the answers was Cincinnati.... You'd think they would have used a different category so not to give her an unfair advantage. (She got 3 of them right, and her competitors each got one of the Ohio questions right.)

There are many reasons to root for Rachel. She's been very calm and cool and confident. And smart. I'd root for her anyway if she wasn't from Cincinnati because she shares my love for Duke Ellington's sax player (Johnny Hodges) and the Marx Brothers (Harpo in particular). No, we're not related...

All the money won by Horn Wednesday, and last week, does not carry over into the finals. The teen champion with the highest two-day total on Friday is guaranteed $75,000. If he or she wins more than that in two days, the winner keeps the larger amount. The second-place finisher is guaranteed $25,000, and the third-place person gets at least $15,000.

One more guarantee: The phone will ring off the hook at Channel 9 tomorrow when people discover they can't see the teen tournament finals, or they can't see "Wheel of Forutne" as usual.
Go Rachel!


at 2/21/2008 8:04 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nice job, Channel 9. Bad enough we are subjected to primetime preempts for prayer meetings and telethons but to preempt this for a lousy homemade auto show production. Glad I'm in Dayton's range

at 2/21/2008 9:13 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

The phone SHOULD ring off the hook! It would seem to me that Channel 9 should take the high road and move the auto show program to the later time. Realize that the auto show is a big deal(And yes I've been to one.)but the young lady in the teen tournament is a one time BIG DEAL!(Ok, two day) It would help if someone from the auto show would weigh in and move that show back.
Lee Ann from the neighborhood

at 2/21/2008 9:15 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

oh and one more thing
YOU GO GIRL, do yourself and the rest of the area proud!
marianthelibrarian from the neighborhood

at 2/21/2008 2:30 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

WCPO-TV GM Bill Fee, I'm outraged as a News 9 viewer but not surprised.

You're in a ratings period and we'll see an hour long car commercial instead of a local girl on our favorite program.

Incredible. Mr. Fee, you've done it again.

Would anyone like the number to call to complain?

at 2/21/2008 4:51 PM Blogger liz said...

It's bad enough that they put their advertising at the bottom of the screen during Jeopary and you can't read the entire question and now this. Shame on you Channel 9.

at 2/21/2008 5:14 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I laughed my rear end off this morning when I heard them talking about this "program change" on the
channel 9 news.
It serves them right to get caught with their pants down by constantly ditching network programming to air something that makes them more money. Not to mention the constant weather interruptions, maps, scrolls at the bottom of the screen and their huge color channel 9 logo bug that comes up practically in the middle of the screen every 15 minutes during prime time network shows.
I hope their phone does ring off the wall and they get a lot of complaints about this. For them it's just business as usual.

at 2/21/2008 6:06 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is a perfect example of how channel 9 SHOULD use their 9.2 digital subchannel. They won't, but they should. More and more of us can get it and while the number may only be in the thousands, isn't this why it's there. Why just continuously repeat old weather forecasts? I also wonder why channel 19 doesn't use their digital sub for Ten O'Clock news when sporting events go overtime. They just leave it dead with a slam on the music service they were forced to drop. Channel 12 is the only local station really doing anything with subchannels.

at 2/21/2008 7:33 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just wanna say that we're all rooting for Rachel. I go to school with her (she's in two of my classes) where she has been made into a celebrity. I loved it today during Chemistry....she was called out of class and when I asked her why later, she said, very aloof "I gotta go to the office after 6th bell...they wanna interview me." So anyways, Rachel is an amazing person and a pretty much genius and hope sje does just as well tonight (Friday...lame channel 9).

at 2/21/2008 8:36 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

This isn't the first time the programming geniuses at 9 have bumped one of the best syndicated shows on TV. It's a good thing there wasn't a church fire in Clifton or they would have pre-empted it for live coverage of two burning steeples. They are truly rotten people.

Here's a question for the jerks at 9: "If their commitment to 'breaking news' is so strong, why didn't they provide live coverage of the fire in downtown Lawrenceburg the other night"?

at 2/22/2008 1:09 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

kiese what did you think of the winter coverage by the stations.

at 2/22/2008 5:37 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kiese, this is off the Jeopardy subject, but it is about channel 9:
Can channel 9 get people on there morning show that are good or at least want to be there? I am a school teacher who was up really early this morning (Friday) to see if my school was closed. When I turned my TV on a little after 4am I saw Larry Handley (which is why I mainly watch channel 9's morning show) give the forecast then they went to this person named Suzanne Murray in their newsroom who talked about the updated list of school closings. When she ended I saw her make this pissed off look on her face and roll her eyes on the air. In seeing this I had to change the channel to 12. At least I know they want to be there.

Kelly in Mason

at 2/22/2008 9:32 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dayton's channel 2.1 came in loud and clear on a small outside antenna.

at 2/22/2008 10:39 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

local stations really need to be careful when pre-empting, cutting in to or otherwise disrupting primetime programming. it seems like you'd make a lot of enemies really quickly, and with everyone fighting for local news ratings, it seems like enemies would be the last thing you'd want.

at 2/22/2008 2:31 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's funny and sad because on the snowiest night of the year, we all got cozy on the couch ready to watch local girl Rachel Horn on Jeopardy.

Instead, we get this luke warm auto show where the weather guesser on 9 actually said: "This is where SOME new cars are on display!"

Wow. Channel 9 prepared again.
SOME new cars?
Did the blow off this poor little girl for a money grab car show that featured SOME new cars?

How did the '98 Olds look down there 9 News crew?
Stunning, I'm sure!

I'm not one to call and complain, but I was curious to how the good folks there would react and the flunky they have answering the phone there couldn't care less and bascially made fun of their own management saying how stupid they are.

Geez! That, and we enjoyed watching the snow coverage on 5 & 12, yet howled with delight when they made some poor sap go live in MOUNT ADAMS showing us how road conditions are there.

Channel 12 was in OUR neighborhood, Western Hills ... gee, too bad for the six people who had to get to MOUNT ADAMS last night!
What? They stuck a camera out the station window?
We're not fooled and we're gone from 9 News.

All hat, no cattle.

at 2/22/2008 7:31 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

The channel 9 guy in Mt Adams had a unique angle to the snow. He quizzed the sewer folks about the dangers of the "watered down salt washing into the sewers". WHAT.

The same sewers filled with rats the size of small dogs and other assorted vermin (dead and alive)plus various chemicals and toxins. And he's asking about salt water runoff.

My wife makes me gargle warm salt water when I have a sore throat and it usually works.

He had to do something though, because during his live report, only one car happened by and one guy walking his dog.

at 2/22/2008 7:31 PM Anonymous Paul Horn said...

Congratulations to Rachel Horn for winning the Jeopardy! Championship

Paul Horn

at 2/23/2008 12:31 PM Blogger wtapp said...

I was upset when I learned Channel 9 was preempting Jeopardy for the Car Show. I was planning on taping the episode overnight but since I don't have cable, only an antenna on the roof, I soon found Wheel of Fortune on Channel 7 and Jeopardy on Channel 2. I guess having that ability will be gone once the switch to HD is made next year.

at 2/25/2008 10:56 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon 5:37 AM... I agree.... who are these people that Ch. 9 keeps putting on the air? Suzanne Murray looks like she needs some sleep judging by the bags under her eyes and boring monotone delivery. Mike Mattingly sounds like a wanna-be standup comedian. Then they have some Laura girl who looks like she is still in high school doing their web promotion segment. The other day during the evening news they had some blond girl doing traffic who looked like she had never seen a TV camera before!

I thought Cincinnati was a fairly large market... large enough to get on-camera personalities with some experience. Are these people interns or what? Why are they on TV? Al Schottlekotte must be rolling over in his grave.

at 2/26/2008 11:34 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Channel 9 must be doing something right, they had the largest ratings during the snow coverage.

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