The Drum’s intrepid Boston correspondent, Noel Young, has been sizing up the performances of expat Brit Piers Morgan as he metaphorically don’s Larry King’s braces to front the famous CNN show. Unfortunately for the limey after an impressive initial display Morgan now seems to be faltering...
With Piers Morgan going live again tonight on Egypt with his CNN show, the American press is sizing him up. The good news for CNN, says the Los Angeles Times, .is that Morgan was in week one way ahead of where Larry King was in his final months with a "miserable" average of 657,000 viewers.
However, last week was less good for the Brit. On Monday, Piers drew 763,000 interviewing former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani; on Thursday, he pulled in just 498,000 for his confab with reality stars Kim and Kourtney Kardashian . Remember he got 2.1 million viewers for his premiere with Oprah Winfrey the week before.
Meantime Piers is conducting a Twitter war with his friend Lord Sugar over the ratings. Sample:
Sugar: 'Piersy is this true..? Piers Morgan beaten by CNBC oh dear! I got more ratings on CNBC when they ran UK version of Apprentice a couple of years ago.'
Morgan: 'Don't you worry about my ratings Lordy, they're ticking along nicely. You worry about your American ratings, which don't exist.
The Chicago Sun Times writer is supportive: "Morgan is still trying to figure out what we want from him, but his instincts are good. Remember what a hard time we gave Posh and David Beckham when they immigrated here? Those were the days. And now we accept Victoria as a guest judge on “American Idol” without blinking.
"We’re not done hazing Morgan yet. All most people know about Morgan is that he’s smart, because he has an accent like in all those fancy boring movies. He has no particular allegiance to America, and seems to think that we’re a silly country. He may be right.
"All of his considerable intelligence and ambition is focused on making us like him. If that means revealing some dark secret, that’s what he’ll do. If we hunger for domestic drama, he’ll divorce his wife. And if what we want most is to hate him, he’ll arrange that, too.
"What’s gotten Morgan this far are some very American qualities: single-minded determination, brashness and shamelessness. How could he fail?"
One problem that CNN must address, says the LA Times is that Morgan's lead-in at 8 p.m., is show "Parker Spitzer," hosted by (disgraced) former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer and Kathleen Parker. This show has only around 522,000 viewers. A poor springboard for the Piers show.
Watch this space!