Tuesday, April 19, 2011

First impressions of Sun News Network

I watched the first two-plus hours of the new Sun News Network last afternoon and early evening, and taped the prime-time shows for viewing later today. I’d like to keep an open mind regarding this network, because I believe it has a useful role to play in Canadian news media. However, I was underwhelmed by the bit I saw.

The kick-off was fine, self-serving, of course, but well done. The next segment featured Ezra Levant on The Source. This program shows promise and I enjoyed the first half. In the second half, though, the interview with veteran Sun newspaper columnist, Peter Worthington, was like watching an infomercial with Levant tossing Worthington softball, self-serving, self-promoting questions. All a bit too stagey and contrived for me. I read Worthington’s stuff every chance I get, but this was too much of a set-up even for me.

David Akin’s Daily Brief was okay. And I mean that literally. Nothing to rave about, but no real complaints either. Could be a bit punchier, but so could most of what we see generally on network news. Question: we were promised Mercedes Stephenson as Akin’s co-host, where was she? She was missed, sorely missed. In it’s present format, this segment is a better fit for Sun’s “hard news” daytime schedule than for evening watching. Bring back Mercedes!

So it’s a cup’s half-full versus cup half-empty sort of thing.

After I’ve had the chance to view the remainder of the schedule, I’ll have more to say about our bright, shiny new network.

And did I say I missed Mercedes Stephenson?


© 2011 Russell G. Campbell
All rights reserved.


  1. I also missed her!

  2. Mercedes and Sun TV mutually agreed to part ways last week. Rumor has it, she made a very partisan comment.

  3. I agree Russ, that show needs Mercedes Stephenson as a regular co-host, she is a great reporter !

  4. I was a bit underwhelmed by it's amateurish news reporting. Some of the interjecting opinions seem forced. However, to be fair, it's a new channel and is just trying to get it's footing. I remember when CTV News Net first began, it was dull and drab and while it is still incredibly politically correct it has improved it's news reporting to a degree (even though it is terribly repetitive and relies on replays on the weekends)

  5. Mercedes and Sun TV co hosting with Aiken is over. It was news a few days ago.

  6. Apparently their budget is rather small. They seemed to get a lot of that money up on the screen.

  7. I didn't really get anything out of watching SUN. The channel looks cheap, tacky and amateurish. After watching a few hours, the cliches of "we're on your side", "news that really matters to you" was getting on my nerves. Even the weather girl said "weather that matters to Canadians"!!
    If you find women in low-cut tops attempting to use big words entertaining, this might be the channel for you. Otherwise, don't expect to be an informed person because you heard a 50 second spiel about an issue on SUN.My T.V. diet consists of Steve Paikin's "The Agenda" and the Michael Coren Show. Otherwise, I read the National Post, BBC News,Times of India,Al-Jazeera, and NYT to get a broad range.