Sunday, August 21, 2011

Scrubs/Patch -- The Voyage Continues

Soul Patch sounds great to me today.  They've dropped the self-consciousness and reduced the on-air contributions from the production guys (except for segments devoted to them, like the very good "Bull Durham" segment).  I'm better able to distinguish between Scot and Matt.  A strong effort today


I did not hear Scrubs last week or this, sorry.  Newbury is getting savaged by The Nation.  I have liked him in the past but must confess (of course) I haven't been by the channel for that show or Diamond Talk in awihle.   From recent comments:

I think I might know why the McClearin and Newbury pair were split up. Because Newbury is absolutely insufferably argumentative. My God, he won't let his partner get a word in edgewise. He's talking over him, interrupting him, telling him that he already knows his points before he finishes them and so dismisses them. It's amazing. And it's also annoying. Maybe Cat thought if he separated McClearin and Newbury things wouldn't be so contentious. If so, he was wrong. It's all on Newbury. He is a man who does not like to be disagreed with. Very uncomfortable radio, for sure.   -- Anonymous

It seems pretty clear to this listener that if Newbury does not respect his co-host, he's dismissive, smug, and a bit of an a-hole. Contrast his work with Sean or Ty where he has to defer to a guy with skins on the wall. Worse yet, when Newbury is working with someone he doesn't respect he tries to drive the bus. And that is a disaster. He's very knowledgable but he's a second banana (potentially a ver good one). But this is not a guy that gets you in and out of segments smoothly or generally can get thru a sentence without a few stumbles."  -- Another Anonymous

Newbury is definitely knowledgeable and has some insights that no one else on the station can offer. Well, since Bacsik's demise anyways. His opinions are generally good. But I do agree with the last two anons. He needs a talking to by the Ticket higher ups. -- Fozzie Bear

 Fozzie Bear sums up the consensus:  Newbury is a very solid sports guy, but lacks some broadcast/locution skills and, for lack of a better word, diplomacy.

Anyway, I'm really glad that The Nation is paying some heed to what The Little One is doing on weekends.  Some good stuff, some drama, and some exposure for the JV.

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Follow Your Plainsman on Twitter:  @Plainsman1310


Anonymous said...

Agreed, Plainsman. And I also agree with Fozzie Bear and the two Anonymous postings where Newbury is concerned. Very knowledgeable and insightful guy, but needs to refine his on air chops and the way he deals with those who differ with him.

The Plainsman said...

No one has mentioned Byron Anderson on the Scrubs. Was he the co-Scrub on Saturday? Newbury's depredations aside, how was he?

I only caught a few minutes of the Cowboy pre-game on The Ticket. Thought it was pretty good. It was Sean Bass and I think I heard him say "Byron" but can't swear to it.

The Plainsman said...

PS to The Nation: Hits have been strong lately from all over the country. My thanks to all Confessors. Spread the word, we've got something going here.

Anonymous said...

Yes, Anderson was the co-Scrub on Saturday. He was fine. I mean he was fine as much as someone could be in that sort of environment. He's just another generic sports talker with a local flavor. And by local flavor I'm talking about his accent.

ap said...

[If you're prone to 'tl;dr', then skip right past this. Also, please forgive the many typos and half-written sentences]

I said I'd write up my thoughts last week, and I never wound up doing it. Part of it was due to lack of time, and part of it was because I wasn't quite sure how to present my thoughts. Part of it was also me wondering why anyone other than myself would care what my thoughts were on this matter...

A funny thing happens when you listen to the ticket and participate in sites such as The UnTicket, twitter, and this great site - the ticket hosts start interacting with you. You get to know them, you learn their stories, and invariably, you begin to like them and even root for them. For me, Newbury is one of several KTCK guys that fall into this category.

I wrote something several months back on The UnTicket about the best and worst moments of a particular Scrubs (Newbury and McClearin) show (link here). In short, I thought that there were some great football observations being made, but there was a lot to work on as well. Comments seemed to agree.

Fast forward to about three weeks ago in the aftermath of the McClearin alien debacle. There were a few incredibly tense moments between the hosts wherein it became clear that their working relationship had become toxic. It wasn't helped at all by weird drops being played at inopportune times thanks to someone seizing control of the board. I believe that moment was the genesis of the wife swap we're in now.

So we're left with several players, in no particular order. [cont'd]

ap said...

[cont'd] First, Scot Harrison. After JJT left, I realized that Scot is really, really good. I didn't get a chance to hear today's Soul Patch offering, but last week's show with McClearin was a smooth radio listen. Scot knows how to pace segments, his sports-knowledge is fairly good, and he was able to work with Matt McClearin and Byron Anderson without any major hiccups.

Next, there's McClearin. His obvious strength is his voice, and the running "alien/child-bride" jokes that surround him keep him in the consciousness of ticket listeners. As far as weaknesses go, I'll try to be as constructive as I can: His sports points don't stand out much, he has a tendency for "foot-in-mouth" incidents, and the filter that exists between the first thought that pops into his brain and falls out of his mouth is, well, porous. (gordo-whispers "I'm SORRY!")

Then, Byron. My sample size for him is too small. The only things that come to mind is that he's a strong fan, a “blue-pill-popper” as JJT used to put it. That's led to several arguments on the Scrubs 2.0 with the "red-pill-popping" Newbury; arguments where I didn't think that Byron really won or lost, just prolonged.

Newbury. He has sports information falling out of every pocket, and out of the thick sports binder Rhynes says he carries with him. A former kicker at USC, so he breaks the 'failed-athlete-turned-sports-broadcaster' mold that Sturm occasionally references. He works with Sea-bass on diamond talk, and worked well on a weekend show with Bacsick before tweetgate. I've learned a lot about sports by following David, which I think says a lot for someone who also listens to Norm and Bob daily. However, there are weaknesses that David needs to desperately address as others have pointed out. Thoughts that enter David's mind are blurted out very quickly – almost as if he'll forget them if he doesn't say them right at that very moment. That often leads to him talking over his co-host, especially in situations where ideas are being exchanged rapidly. Newbury also has a habit of dismissing points that deviate from his current line of thinking (see above), and that has a certain element of disdain to it that's becoming apparent to other listeners, judging from some of the comments I've seen here.

With the Soulpatch 2.0, pairing McClearin with Harrison gives the audience a well-executed, vocally-rich listening experience. For some reason, I've got it in my head that Scot's like a “dad” that keeps his children in line and tells them sports stories in a very kindergarten-teacher-llike fashion. I felt he was the under-card when paired with JJT, but it seems that he's more than capable of holding his own – including generating interesting non-sports segments (i.e. the story of his daughter's mission) and tossing in some humor. I don't know that Matt added too much as an equal co-host, more-so as a guest in the show that generated a few awkward E-brake moments. I've only heard Episode 1 so far, so perhaps he caught his stride in Episode 2. Unfortunately, I didn't really learn much from the show, and I didn't laugh much either – It was just filler for a weekend morning, one that I'd probably skip if I was behind on listening.
[more cont'd]

ap said...

[more cont'd]
For the Scrubs, the Anderson/Newbury experiment made me tense for many reasons. One, there have been three on-air fights that I've counted. I know the reasons behind some of them, but at least one was caused by the sports-passion phenomenon Gordo describes and the inability of anyone in the studio to properly contain and direct it. Two, their wheels are shot out by rogue elements during these arguments. Do I really need to have wet fart drops played over top of a sports shouting-match? And three, being a Newbury fan, I cringe whenever I hear some of David's weaknesses come out. Like you would be when you see a friend miss a note in a piano recital or something (flawed analogy alert). I've thought about it for a week, and I came to the following conclusion: The ticket prides itself on being a station where the hosts are 27 and sitting at a bar with wings, beer, boobs and sports. That's precisely what this version of the Scrubs is, replete with the arguments, incoherency and off-color humor one would expect two guys that barely know each other to generate when placed in that situation.

Most of these guys have full-time weekday jobs, so they're not afforded the regular amount of show prep and producer resources that the weekday shows have. They see each other on the day of their show, so they don't have the benefit of years of relying on chemistry formed via friendship that the other shows do (Tee-Box, Orphanage or Cirque). They have incredibly high comedic standards to live up to (Gordo, BaD Radio and Corby), and any bit they attempt will be “meh'd” out of the park. I don't know if they receive much in terms of coaching, training or feedback from the higher ups – maybe that's why the Plainsman is getting so many hits for these articles, who knows. It's certainly a tough situation to be in, and I'd hate to think that they come here and think that we're dog-piling (and believe me, the weekend and weekday folks do visit here and read these comments).

The next round of the wife-swap, assuming it continues, will be Newbury+Harrison and McClearin+Anderson. I have high hopes for the former, specifically that Newbury will bring his sports-ADD to the show and Harrison will pace it out into a nice, well-executed show. I have no idea what to expect from McClearin+Anderson pairing – anything from the unstructured dump-button-riding comedy of the Orphanage, to what the Scrubs currently is now, to an all-out nude jello fighting contest seems plausible. Regardless, I think that if the swap continues, the end result may well be one show left standing on Sunday morning, one/two re-assigned former hosts, and the “play” button being hit two hours early by The Orphanage.

Sorry for all the words, and good luck with everybody's bottoms.

The Plainsman said...

Great stuff, AP, and I'll have a couple of things to say about it soon.

One possible programming note: On Patch yesterday, I thought I heard Harrison say something about the Harrison/McClearin experiment continuing, but he may not have been as specific as I'm recalling respecting the personnel involved. AP has suggested that there's going to be a swapping of swapped wives in the weeks to come that would result in the prospective pairings he discusses above. I'm wondering if perhaps Scot/Matt are going to get a little more rope.

Anonymous said...


Mark that under, "who gives a $%^$."

(I keed! I keed!)

ap said...

"Mark that under, 'who gives a $%^$.'"

I fully expected that, and your comment brought a smile to my face, sir! :)

Anonymous said...

Great stuff, ap. I wonder if the CTOs will ever let Harrison go at it alone. Why must there always be a pair (or more) hosts? Sans Norm, of course.

I think Newbury's an asset to the Ticket. But, like you, I do think he has his weaknesses. And these weaknesses do need to be addressed.

The Plainsman said...

Agreed in spades, Anonymous.

I will have a post on that very subject in the near future.

Gypo Nolan said...

BIIIGG weekend shakeup coming in about 10 days.

The Plainsman said...

Gypo, you are indeed an "Informer." I hope you come to a better end than Victor McLaglen.

Anonymous said...

C'mon Gypo, you can't leave a tease like that and not give the rest of the goods!