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Protest, She Wrote

Jan 15, 2007  •  Post A Comment

Just skip to the fifth paragraph if you’ve heard this before, but The Insider takes her television viewing very, perhaps even much too, seriously.

She threatened New York Post readers with assorted types of personal mayhem if they didn’t watch “Everybody Loves Raymond” in sufficient numbers to get it off “nobody watches `Raymond'” Friday nights and into a more fertile time slot. She once gave readers the CBS switchboard number and told them to call and say “chop your own damn celery.” That was to prove the ratings didn’t adequately reflect the size of the audience that watched an episode in which there was a particularly hilarious and touching power struggle between Ray’s parents, Frank and Marie.

She invited Post readers to come to her apartment for coffee, Krispy Kreme donuts (then very new to Manhattan and soooooo hot) and a screening of multiple episodes of “Cupid,” which was struggling on ABC. The idea was that each person would go out and proselytize, proselytize, proselytize for the show. It starred Jeremy Piven as either Cupid come to Earth, or a delusional man who nevertheless managed to wreak romantic magic on a regular basis.

ABC canceled “Cupid” not long after, but The Insider-who even then tended to refer to herself in the third person-felt better for having tried to save a lovely, lively and rewarding show.

So, here we are with NBC’s “Friday Night Lights” still drawing a mystifyingly small audience and assorted other situations that demand action.

The Insider suggests that:

Every Wednesday night at 9, record the show you usually watch, but watch “Friday Night Lights” with your best girl friends (a mother-daughter night would work, too) and debate the age-old good-boy, bad-boy, good-bad-boy, and bad-good-boy attractions. There are many other reasons to make “Friday” an appointment show, but this would be a good start. It’s so easy to fall in love with “Friday.” Just one look is all it takes.

Every time one well-paid co-anchor of a morning show gives another well-paid co-anchor a showy, expensive gift on the air, fax copies of your pay stubs (with Social Security numbers and the like inked out, of course) to said morning show to remind them of just who their audience is.

Every time an on-air personality-news, entertainment, hybrid or talk show-shows up oddly dressed, over- or underdressed, or just inappropriately dressed, fax a copy of a “Fire the Stylist” snapshot from a supermarket tabloid to the show. Fax the same photo every day if you think it’s warranted. And when the professional stylist who is telling you, the viewers, how to dress looks like Superscary Spice or Abby on “NCIS,” it’s warranted.

Every time a pop-up promotion for the next show ruins the moment in the show you’re currently watching, take a picture of yourself not looking at a commercial and e-mail it to the network.

Every time a cable news host-and you know who you are, Tucker Carlson-aggressively insists he doesn’t know what the big deal is about the fact that for the first time, a woman is the Speaker of the House and second backup for a fallen president, send a zipper to said cable news host. A short zipper.

Every time one high-profile TV personality trades insults with another-most likely for self-promotional reasons and/or because of anger management and narcissistic issues-The Insider wants you to get up off your couches, right then. Go turn off your TV sets. Go to your windows. Open your windows. Stick your heads out and yawn. Because we’re bored as hell and we don’t want to be taken hostage anymore.

At least The Insider, who was born with anger-management issues but who blows kisses at TV she likes, doesn’t want to take this anymore.