When I saw the headline that Kate Snow was leaving her post as anchor of ABC’s Good Morning America weekend edition, my first thought was, “Not another hire by Linda McMahon!” Snow, after all, had done one of the first inane national media pieces on McMahon’s Senate candidacy; the interview transcript posted on the ABC News website omitted the single perfunctory question about her responsibility for the pandemic of drugs and death in her World Wrestling Entertainment. (See “Linda McMahon and the Anatomy of a Network TV News Dud,” January 12, http://wrestlingbabylon.wordpress.com/2010/01/12/linda-mcmahon-and-the-anatomy-of-a-network-tv-news-dud/.)
But it turns out that Snow is going to NBC, where she will be a correspondent on Dateline.
NBC is already something of a house network for the McMahon family. With producer Dick Ebersol, now the president of NBC Sports, the old World Wrestling Federation got its first network TV slot in the 1980s with Saturday Night’s Main Event. (Ebersol will be at the WrestleMania festivities in Arizona in two weeks to help induct baseball broadcaster Bob Uecker into the WWE Hall of Fame. How does Bob Uecker qualify for the WWE Hall of Fame? Don’t ask.)
Of course, NBC and Ebersol also partnered with WWE and the McMahons on the disastrous XFL football league in 2001.
And NBC is the home of WWE’s Tribute to the Troops holiday specials from Asia.
In the spring of 2008, Dateline was working on an investigative piece about the Chris Benoit murder-suicide the year before. Numerous sources (I was not among them) were told to ready themselves for interviews. Over Memorial Day weekend, someone in high places at NBC pulled the plug on the story.
I wouldn’t bet that reviving it will be Kate Snow’s first assignment there.