I know it's Sweeps Month, but I just watched as KOAM devoted its first five minutes to Star Wars.
Does Star Wars have a place in the news. Of course, it does. It has been fixture in popular culture for 28 years, but was it more important to KOAM's viewers than other news items, such as the Jasper County law enforcement sales tax debate and the expansion of Precious Moments in Carthage.
If this were the only time that KOAM, which is the station most known for having a hard-news bent in this area, had done this, it might not be worth mentioning, but earlier newscasts today also had a strong Star Wars flavor and so did the 10 p.m. newscast last night, including a live remote. I enjoyed the live remote since the girl who was interviewed was Joplin High School student Lindsey Hamm, one of my favorite students from my first year of teaching at South.
It should be mentioned that KODE and KSNF stuck with the hard news openings today. I don't mind KOAM lightening up a little bit, but devoting the first five minutes of a newscast to fluff, even a cultural phenomenon like Star Wars appears to be overdoing it a bit.