, , , ,

Ever sat infront of a screen and dedicated an hour or so to a TV programme that was interesting enough to have you wrap yourself up in all your warming gear and snug up in the couch only to have the programme be cut short? And not just interrupted with a commercial but brought to a sudden screeching end? If it’s ever happened to you then you can understand my frustration when the screening of Hanna ( the new Hollywood movie) on one TV station suddenly came to an end right in the middle of a very engaging scene!


I can never understand what is with our local TV broadcasters because that wasn’t a first, and it probably won’t be the last. There’s the national TV station, which seems to have taken an oath never to be bound to their programme lineup, and never to improve the quality of its service to the level of their competitors, or even attempt to surpass it. And being the national broadcaster one wold think they had larger pockets, enough to buy the best there is.

A particularly common incident I find rather hilarious on this particular national broadcaster is the moment right after the news anchor says his/her goodbyes. Instead of turning to a different segment immediately just like all othe broadcasters do, this national broadcaster’s newsreaders are left staring at the camera for a good 30 seconds! So they stare, we stare right back, and they keep staring in total silence. It never fails to make me giggle a little.

This other broadcaster, arguably at the top of their game right now, has got a thing for over zealous reporters. The folks at this station insist on accentuating certain parts of their report, usually their names or the broadcaster’s name in a rather ungamely way. They tend to change the pronunciations, prolong the letters and words, or say their names with a singsong intonation that has you running for your earplugs. I often wonder if they teach that to them in broadcasting bootcamp under ‘Personalising your reports 101’ because it sure sounds like it. But for this teeny-weeny offence, these folks have really got it. They give value for money-only that it’s not pay-tv. Much the better.

One of my funniest moments on this same station was during the South Sudan independence broadcasts with Maurice Mugisha reporting live from South Sudan. At a certain point Maurice thought he was off-air and started using the camera as a mirror. He tilted his face side to side, patted himself, arranged his suit, and all those things you might do infront of a mirror, only to realise that he was actually on air! I’ve never laughed so hard. He recovered himself quite well, though, and went straight to reporting the news as if nothing had happened. I enjoyed myself immensely during this little act, and I remember it everytime I look at him. Which is often, as he is a news anchor.

I only wish that station had some Korean dramas to air, I’m a suckler for those. My favourite Korean-drama broadcasters have a tendency to black out (blue out, in actual sense) right in the middle of the very dramas that have me tune in! The both of them, at that. I wonder how that happens. That a TV station just goes off air? It could very well be my signal, I have nothing against the folks, for they are the only ones with Korean dramas to bring to the table. And I was happy, until one of them recently got into the habit of telling very nearly each and every thing that would happen in the next episode! I was dismayed, for it took much fun out of the experience of waiting for the next episode. So every time the ‘next time on Chumong’ shows up I just flip channels, and keep my peace.

I would have liked to refrain from saying anything about the broadcaster that plagiarised ‘America’s Next Top Model’ to make ‘Uganda’s Next Top Model’ but alas! Their list of non-entertainments is more than I can put here, and to say that these people should be arrested and banned from broadcasting is an understatement. To demean a whole franchise and simply wish to ride on Tyra Banks’ success might be overlooked (and oh, what a big might!) if the work done was anything to look at. Believe you me you would feel the very same way if you were to watch a single episode of Uganda’s Next Top Model, or simply tune in to their daily breakfst show. Do I hear an amen here, folks, because I know for a fact it’s not just me that feels this way.