LOST AMID THE KPIX 86ING of FRANK MALLICOAT: Behind the scenes, co-anchor, Michelle Griego, apparently didn't have Mallicoat's back. I'm not saying it was Griego who was responsible for Mallicoat's ouster; the ratings (or lack thereof) sealed his fate, but make no mistake, Griego is not crying an ounce over the move.
Let's face it, it was Mallicoat who drove the car and Griego was simply along for the ride.
Mallicoat was never going to have an easy ride here; he replaced the extremely popular John Kessler and Sydney Kohara.
In order to have a successful news program, especially in the highly competitive morning news platform, you have to have, first and foremost, some luck. Then to have a complete buy-in from the players, including both staff and management --that goes without saying. Only Mallicoat, who is beloved in the newsroom and respected as a "team player" never had complete backing and support, most especially from Griego. One alarming first reaction from a prominent PIX staffer: "Not a fan of her (Griego)--she's just a reader and she's not the answer."
And here's the problem, I don't think Kenny Choi, (coming from Hawaii) is the answer either. I've never heard of the guy, but I can't imagine he's suddenly going to move the needle for PIX and improve the numbers. The viewers simply have turned off KPIX5 and given them a big thumbs down.
It didn't help matters that Mallicoat was making pretty big bucks (about $300K a year) all the while the ratings were getting worse. Combine that with Griego's lack of support and a disconnect from the bosses and you have the fateful outcome.
And don't look for anything even remotely more rosier on the horizon.
*Meanwhile, across the street at KGO-TV, the mood is not that much more happier; ND, Tracey Watkowski, is not a very beloved woman in the newsroom. KGO continues to lose good people to KNTV (NBC Bay Area); senior sports producer and fill-in, Colin Resch is off to San Jose.
This latest move, (another steal from former KGO ND, Kevin Keeshan and now involved high up at NBC in NY) has the KGO staff grumbling about Watkowski's reign and what portends for the future. "Future? What future? She's ruining this place, " said a disgruntled staffer. "Everyone hates her guts."
By my conservative estimate, about 23 people have left KGO since Watty took over in 2012. And while KGO enjoys fairly strong ratings in most time slots, Watty's penchant for playing favorites is the subject of derision inside 900 Front. Most ominously for Trixie is her latest habit of hiring mostly "women and non-heterosexual men"--those last words weren't mine. Yes, some in news are beginning to get royally pissed off and Trixie is at the forefront.
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