: One of the great characters of TV news has died. Jerry Nachman, news head of MSNBC, former news director of WNBC, former editor of the NY Post, and former many things, lost to cancer at 57. Jerry (not related to a San Francisco columnist who is as skinny as this Jerry was not) was the last guy I saw who really loved local TV and believed it could be more than just a lowest common demolisher of news; he gave it a voice and energy and real reporting. I met him just a few times, once when he was talking to me about being a critic on his air. I was a TV critic then, so we compared notes about loving the medium. Jerry sat there, always an imposing presence, and said, to paraphrase from memory:
Local TV is where this action is. People pay attention to local TV. They don’t pay attention to network. Local. When I go out people recognize me because they see me on local TV, not network. Look at me. I’m no prize. But I got a gorgeous wife because I’m on local TV. Honest.
TV news lost someone who loved TV news and knew its potential. TV lost a smart one.