Pages

17 comments

Jump to bottom
1 Political Atheist  Fri, Dec 7, 2012 9:22:30am

Good post. Chicken and egg here. As goes the population, so goes the ratings. As goes the population so goes the demographics like a leftward momentum from dense urban cities. The power base shifted from rural to urban. Votes and ratings in the same phenomenon. Those out of power were and are feeling the impact in cultural and political terms.

2 Destro  Fri, Dec 7, 2012 9:36:11am

re: #1 Political Atheist

Thanks! I think the sudden nature of that purge (it was before my time so I can't know from any first hand experience) may have had an unsettling quality to a a demographic population those shows were targeted to.

Right about this time the 'western' died out also as both a movie and television staple.

3 Randall Gross  Fri, Dec 7, 2012 9:39:48am

Very interesting theory, but the Waltons debuted that year, and Little House on the Prairie was soon to follow. It probably was a contributory factor, but really it was more of a symptom of the demographic changes across America, not the cause if you ask me.

That's why we saw Buddy Ebsen transplanted from Beverly Hillbillies to Barnaby Jones. The country was moving to the city at the time, and TV just replicated that. Rural life became Idealized historic drama (Waltons, Little House on the Prairie) and transplants from country to city were featured. (McCloud anyone?) CBS & other Networks still follow that pattern (NCIS - Gibbs, Leverage - Eliott, CSI - Nick, CSI NY - Lindsay, etc.) because it works to keep that demographic locked in.

It helped, but it really wasn't until the 90's that this fish lipped Christian Tribalist wrote his separatist manifesto and started building the other institutions. (If you look back you will also see that Heritage & FCF started before your timeline too)

4 Destro  Fri, Dec 7, 2012 9:43:47am

re: #3 Randall Gross

That's a very good point. Instead of being the cause of any discontent it was just a marketing reflection of where the country was heading.

In that regard it may have been a visible sign of the changing landscape that was part of the 'culture wars' Pat Buchanan had been always mentioning.

5 Randall Gross  Fri, Dec 7, 2012 9:52:06am

re: #4 Destro

I think there is an effect there but it's never just one thing that you can point to for cause in most major trends.

6 Rocky-in-Connecticut  Fri, Dec 7, 2012 9:58:04am

It is ironic that Normal Lear-produced hit shows featuring loud-mouthed anti-heroes were watched and loved by many conservatives. I remember my own father (a tax-hating, government loathing southern conservative) loved watching Archie Bunker.

I think one could watch a well-written show like that and identify with and champion the anti-hero even into the end of the show when they eventually get their comeuppance. (Remember Sammy Davis Jr kissing Archie anyone?)

Conservatives could ignore the overall message of the plot and revel in the ideology expressed openly on TV by someone like Archie, keeping their mind more or less shut, ignoring the overall message of the show. Archie was their Id on full display and they loved it.

7 Randall Gross  Fri, Dec 7, 2012 9:58:38am

The other thing that major broadcasters have figured out: even though that rural audience are small pools compared to those great lakes in the cities, the rural audience is highly loyal and always tuned in. When I visit my Dad's friends in Forsythe MO either Fox news, Turner Classic Movies, or some Iteration of Law and Order is the constant background noise. Even though nobody is really watching it sure helps their ratings.

8 Destro  Fri, Dec 7, 2012 10:00:02am

re: #6 Rocky-in-Connecticut

(Remember Sammy Davis Jr kissing Archie anyone?)

Was that why it was funny? A black guy kissing a racist white guy and the joke was on Archie? I assumed it was because Davis had come out in support for Nixon and this was a play on that (again before my time- going on what I recall from studying the culture).

9 Destro  Fri, Dec 7, 2012 10:04:46am

re: #7 Randall Gross

The other thing that major broadcasters have figured out: even though that rural audience are small pools compared to those great lakes in the cities, the rural audience is highly loyal and always tuned in. When I visit my Dad's friends in Forsythe MO either Fox news, Turner Classic Movies, or some Iteration of Law and Order is the constant background noise. Even though nobody is really watching it sure helps their ratings.

Country music is really the only place where physical album sales are still a factor other than children's CD sales.

From what I recall, grandparents tend to but children's music CDs as presents so that is why those sales are strong and country music cds sell because those areas lack bandwidth that would allow easy downloading. But it can also be because country fans are die hard loyal. From what I have seen of country music fans, their relationship to the musician is not based on his music alone but on his narrative (family man, loves god, patriotic) and if the star veers from the narrative they will react against the star.

10 Joanne  Fri, Dec 7, 2012 11:30:36am

Interesting theory, one I think has merit of study.

I think that, and someone correct me if I am wrong, that this timeframe was about when right wing radio started pupping up on dials across America where little else was offered. When I was a kid, we'd drive from Chicago to Florida and WGN, a powerful Chicago station, would follow for so long, but other than that, there was virtually nothing on radio.

Right wing radio filled up rural airwaves. I don't know the year it started, though.

11 dragonath  Fri, Dec 7, 2012 12:01:33pm

I remember reading about right wing radio in the LA as far back as the late 60s*. And in other forms of media, you had the conservative wig-out of cartoonists like Al Capp and Milton Caniff.

*Joe Pyne, best known today for Zappa's putdown:

Pyne: "So, I guess your long hair makes you a woman."
Zappa: "So I guess your wooden leg makes you a table!"

12 RadicalModerate  Fri, Dec 7, 2012 12:32:23pm

There was a programming shift in the early 1970s from targeting an older audience to a younger, more urban demographic by CBS - but this was more due to their seeing their ratings stranglehold slipping to ABC (and to a lesser degree NBC) due to ABC's heavy programming toward younger audiences.
And simply because a show had a urban setting didn't mean that it had a smaller audience, either. For example, "All in the Family" had HUGE ratings in rural America.

Finally, the so-called rural purge wasn't absolute by any means either, as there were still rural-themed shows like Gunsmoke and The Waltons anchoring their scheduling days.

13 Destro  Fri, Dec 7, 2012 1:30:43pm

re: #12 RadicalModerate

I can talk about TV history (and its impact on culture) all day long.

14 KingKenrod  Fri, Dec 7, 2012 2:25:52pm

I think the rural purge is just one of many things that represented a loss of political and cultural control to white Christian conservatives, a loss which had been ongoing throughout the century. The siege mentality you describe is real, but it hardly started with something trivial like the rural purge. How can you differentiate from outrage supposedly starting in the early 1970's from earlier movements, like the Dixiecrat split from the Democratic Party?

15 Destro  Fri, Dec 7, 2012 2:57:50pm

re: #14 KingKenrod

I think the rural purge is just one of many things that represented a loss of political and cultural control to white Christian conservatives, a loss which had been ongoing throughout the century. The siege mentality you describe is real, but it hardly started with something trivial like the rural purge. How can you differentiate from outrage supposedly starting in the early 1970's from earlier movements, like the Dixiecrat split from the Democratic Party?

I don't. I kind of think it was like one of the many straws on their camel's back kind of thing but because it was TV it was more, I don't know, tangible?

16 Holidays are Family Fun Time  Fri, Dec 7, 2012 10:34:53pm

There was Hee Haw and many country singers had their own TV Variety Shows. Dolly Parton got her start with Porter Waggoner. I can also remember many Johnny Cash specials. Oh yeah, Lawrence Welk was still on the air.

I think the Citified shows were striking a balance.

17 Destro  Sat, Dec 8, 2012 1:55:05am

re: #16 Holidays are Family Fun Time

There was Hee Haw and many country singers had their own TV Variety Shows. Dolly Parton got her start with Porter Waggoner. I can also remember many Johnny Cash specials. Oh yeah, Lawrence Welk was still on the air.

I think the Citified shows were striking a balance.

i just realized why this was in my thoughts for a while now. I recalled Romney singing the Davey Crockett television theme song on a campaign stop (I know that show predated the purge era shows). I just found that odd (more odd than normal for Mitt) and it must have stuck in my mind -- and the crowd going "yeah!" like he did something profound.


This page has been archived.
Comments are closed.

^ back to top ^

TwitterFacebook

Turn off all ads for a full year by subscribing!
For about 33 cents a day (per month) or 22 cents a day (per year), our subscription option turns off all advertisements at LGF!
Read more...

► LGF Headlines

  • Loading...

► Tweeted Articles

  • Loading...

► Tweeted Pages

  • Loading...

► Top 10 Comments

  • Loading...

► Bottom Comments

  • Loading...

► Recent Comments

  • Loading...

► Tools/Info

► Tag Cloud

► Contact

You must have Javascript enabled to use the contact form.
Your email:

Subject:

Message:


Messages may be published unless you request otherwise.
Tech Note:
Using the Contact Form
LGF Pages

This button leads to the main index of LGF Pages, our user-submitted articles. You can post your own LGF Pages simply by registering a free account with us.

Create a Page

This is the LGF Pages posting bookmarklet. To use it, drag this button to your browser's bookmark bar, and title it 'LGF Pages' (or whatever you like). Then browse to a site you want to post, select some text on the page to use for a quote, click the bookmarklet, and the Pages posting window will appear with the title, text, and any embedded video or audio files already filled in, ready to go.

Last updated: 2014-03-07 2:19 pm PST

LGF User's Guide
Recent Pages
team_fukit
Another Daily Toddy
Because in wingnut world, desiring a more diverse university student body = "ethnic cleansing" Fox News commentator Todd Starnes is outraged by the president of Western Washington University's deliberately provocative comment, which he has made at each of the school's past six opening convocations, that "if we are as white in ten years as we are today, Western will have failed as a university." ...

52 minutes ago
Views: 22 • Comments: 0
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 0
Randall Gross
FDNY Commissioner Salvatore Cassano’s Racist Son Quietly Applies for His Old EMT Job
Cassano's reinstatement attempt comes just a little over a year after his embarrassed father issued a statement saying he was "extremely disappointed in the comments posted online by my son." Among his son's galling tweets, were, "I like jews about as much as hitler #toofar? NOPE." On Martin Luther King Day last year, he tweeted, "MLK could go kick rocks for all I ...

4 hours, 10 minutes ago
Views: 75 • Comments: 0
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 0
palmerskiss
More Than Half the Women in These Countries Are Married by the Time They Turn 18
The report is as sad as it is horrifying. A child bride forced into marriage in Nigeria has been accused of killing her much older groom and three of his friends by poisoning their meals with rat poison. The 14-year-old girl, Wasila Umaru, was married to the 35-year-old man last week. Although she told authorities she was forced into the betrothal, Wasila will ...

8 hours, 42 minutes ago
Views: 93 • Comments: 0
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 1
FemNaziBitch
Criminalizing Expectant Mothers - NYT
Even by the standards of the growing Republican assault on the lives and rights of women, a new bill passed by bipartisan majorities in both houses of Tennessee's Legislature recently stands out for being meanspirited and counterproductive. If signed by the state's Republican governor, Bill Haslam, the legislation would give Tennessee the dubious distinction of being the first state to specifically authorize the ...

13 hours, 32 minutes ago
Views: 122 • Comments: 0
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 1
Idle Drifter
Calgary stabbings: How knife crime in Canada can cause ‘moral panic’
What Calgary police chief Rick Hanson called the "worst mass murder" in the city's history didn't end at the barrel of a gun. Instead, the 22-year-old suspect identified on Tuesday as Matthew de Grood is accused of entering the kitchen at a house party, taking "a large knife" and using it to fatally stab four men and one woman, all of whom were students ...

21 hours, 40 minutes ago
Views: 110 • Comments: 2
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 0
Skip Intro
Back Story of Yasiel Puig’s Journey to America Should Concern Dodgers
Seemingly from the moment Cuban refugee Yasiel Puig showed up at Dodger Stadium out of nowhere, arriving last June unwilling to discuss his unknown background, the talk behind the batting cages has been rife with unprintable rumors. There were rumors Puig was smuggled out of Cuba by members of a Mexican drug cartel. There were rumors he still owed the smugglers money, and ...

1 day, 3 hours ago
Views: 169 • Comments: 2
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 1
aagcobb
New York Electoral College: State Joins National Popular Vote Interstate Compact.
Ben Mathis-Lilley, Slate: New York Electoral College: State Joins National Popular Vote Interstate Compact. Instead of pushing for a Constitutional amendment, which would have to be ratified in 38 states, advocates ask individual state legislatures to pass an agreement: that they'll pledge all their presidential electors to the winner of the national popular vote as soon as enough other states pass the law to ...

1 day, 4 hours ago
Views: 150 • Comments: 6
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 1
cycroft
Russ Campbell’s Blog: Will Trudeau’s Party Pay for His Ill-Chosen Words?
Justin Trudeau has talked him­self into a defama­tion law­suit that is likely to leave his party quite a bit lighter in the wal­let. The shoot-from-the-lip Lib­eral leader and his On­tario cam­paign co-chair David Mac­Naughton are named in a $1.5-mil­lion li­bel suit filed on be­half of Chris­tine Innes, a can­di­date who was barred from run­ning for the Lib­eral party. Innes had wanted to con­test ...

1 day, 11 hours ago
Views: 97 • Comments: 1
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 1
Political Atheist
The Insane History of Rockets at Jet Propulsion Laboratories
The Rocket Boys In the late 1930s, a group of Caltech graduate students were booted off campus after blowing up (part of!) their building during a rocket test gone awry. Unwilling to give up on the joy of semi-controlled explosions, the students and a few of their friends headed into the San Gabriel Mountains. They picked a deserted gully -- Arroyo Seco -- ...

2 days ago
Views: 197 • Comments: 0
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 2
iossarian
Drug Companies Want Your Money
Two thematically-related stories on the BBC at the moment: UK drug company Glaxo 'paid bribes to Polish doctors' UK drug company GlaxoSmithKline is facing a criminal investigation in Poland for allegedly bribing doctors, BBC Panorama has discovered. Tamiflu: Millions wasted on flu drug, claims major report Hundreds of millions of pounds may have been wasted on a drug for flu that works no better ...

2 days, 7 hours ago
Views: 228 • Comments: 0
Tweets: 8 • Rating: 0
 Frank says:

Everyone in this room is wearing a uniform, and don't kid yourself. -- Live at the Circle Star, from 20 Years on the Road, when notified there were "cops in uniform" in the audience.