Long Long Knives…

Vanity Fair’s Bryan Burrough writes about Brian Williams’ future…or lack therof…

Some executives at competing networks believe Williams will take whatever NBC offers because he has few other options. “The other networks won’t take him, I actually don’t think CNN wants him—I mean, the guy is damaged goods,’’ says one. One conceivable home would be Fox News, whose C.E.O., Roger Ailes, has defended Williams since his suspension. But it’s far from clear that Williams would embrace Fox’s right-wing slant. Other executives suggest Williams, like his onetime NBC colleagues Katie Couric and David Gregory, could find a home at Yahoo or some other Internet outlet. But those who have known Williams the longest strongly doubt he would accept such a comedown.

From the beginning, many have thought the most natural spot for Williams to land is on his own talk show, whether at NBC or some other network. A talk show, even one at a ratings laggard like MSNBC, plays to his strengths as a raconteur and a personality and is even an option that Williams has long considered—it was his desire to break from the hard-news mold, after all, that motivated his failed attempts at persuading CBS chief Les Moonves to let him replace David Letterman and NBCUniversal president Steve Burke to give him Jay Leno’s job. That Williams is viewed inside NBC as a poor interviewer wouldn’t matter, and in one fell swoop it would wash away the credibility questions. No one worried about whether Larry King or Howard Stern had credibility. They watched because they were entertaining. And for all his sins, there’s no denying that Williams could still be one heck of an entertainer.

One Response to “Long Long Knives…”

  1. imnotblue Says:

    When do “long knives” become “swords?”

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