Matt Buckler: Rock rejects invitation from Oscars

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

Aug. 30—The Oscars thought it had a sure-fire ratings winner — Chris Rock as host of the 2023 ceremony. Considering what happened the last time Rock stepped on an Oscar stage — the headslap heard around Hollywood — the Academy Awards ratings would have rebounded after years of decline. Rock's opening monologue might have drawn more viewers than the final episode of "M—A—S—H."

The New York Post is reporting that Rock did get the offer, but turned it down. Apparently it was too early to go back to a stage that turned into a combat zone when Will Smith walked on stage after Rock made a joke about his wife and slapped him.

Rock also turned down an Emmys hosting role, so being an emcee is not in his future.

But it would sure be a ratings bonanza if it was.

Depp defying appearance

Perhaps there is another potential host the Oscars could go after — Johnny Depp, who doesn't even have to be in the theater.

His digital appearance as a Moon Man at Sunday's MTV Video Music Awards was one of the most talked about parts of the telecast.

Ratings went up 3 percent, which is a big deal for awards show.

Depp said he needed the work. Perhaps he'll need it again on Oscar night.

Pump problem

WFSB-TV3 has a new investigative reporter, Sam Smink, and her first report was an intriguing one.

I never noticed before that some gas pumps have stickers on the outside to protect customers. Obviously most of us are more concerned with another part of the pump — the price — that we're not too concerned about stickers. But Smink complained if that sticker looks unraveled or tampered with, someone may be able to steal your credit card information. And gas is already expensive enough without adding to it.

It almost seems primitive to use cash, but it still works, even in today's high-tech era.

WVIT-TV30 usually has a comprehensive sports report, but suffered a busted play Monday.

It aired a feature on the Killingly High football team during the 6 p.m. newscast, but the graphics were about Weaver. It made for some confusion for viewers.

But the station committed another turnover when it aired the same report at 11 and didn't change the graphics. That meant the viewers were still confused. Apparently the station got faked out by its own report.

Morning makeover

There's one thing you won't see on WFSB-TV3's daytime lineup for the time being — syndicated programming.

The station only had one syndicated show, "Live with Kelly and Ryan," but that show will be replaced on Tuesday, Sept. 6, by a local program, "Great Day."

The new show will be hosted by the tireless Scot Haney and Ellington native Caitlin Francis. In a Channel 3 promo, Haney promised celebrity guests, money saving tips, and fun. That's what Haney usually does best, have fun.

"Kelly and Ryan" will be moving to its old home, WTNH-TV8. The show is on a new station, but keeps it's 9 a.m. time slot. That will shove the existing 9 a.m. show, "Good Morning Connecticut," to 10 a.m.

That means the current 10 a.m. program, "The Drew Barrymore Show," will have to find a new location.

It will go to Channel 8's sister station, WCTX-TV59, where it will air at 3 p.m.

Because of the expense, syndicated programming is dwindling, but it really doesn't matter — local is always better anyway.


Matt Buckler is television and radio editor of the Journal Inquirer.

Follow Matt Buckler for more television, radio, and sports coverage on the JI's Twitter @journalinquirer, and see his articles on the Journal Inquirer Facebook page.