TV review: "Newsreaders" skewers the news brilliantly

Staff Writer
Columbus Alive

Truthfully, there’s nothing funny about television news and its awfulness, but there are programs such as “The Daily Show” and “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver” that deliver the news with a great dose of laughter — and often scathingly insightful commentary. In other words, making fun of the ineptitude on television can be utterly hilarious.

Adult Swim’s series “Newsreaders” takes full advantage of how laughably terrible television news is — cable, network, even the wonderful “60 Minutes” has its issues — and spits out one of the funniest shows on television. From the creators of the similarly spoof-tastic “Childrens Hospital,” “Newsreaders” pulls no punches when it comes to skewering the ridiculousness of its subjects.

“Newsreaders” operates by presenting segments in a newsmagazine format like “60 Minutes” or “Dateline.” Host Reagan Biscayne (Alan Tudyk) opens each episode — “All that and s’mores tonight on ‘Newsreaders’” — and we move immediately into the news segments.

The segments are brilliant, presenting “hard-hitting” pieces on the new craze among teenagers known as “Fuck Dancing,” or a sheer force of investigative journalism resulting in the revelation that Roswell is not, in fact, an alien hotbed, but actually just haunted by ghosts.

While all of this is purely fantastic in its execution and filled with big laughs — and not to mention, the names of the reporters (Narge Hemingway, Clavis Kim, Sadee Deenus) are awesome — there’s one man who stands out, Mr. Skip Reming (Ray Wise).

Reming is basically a hybrid of 1950s causal racism and Andy Rooney’s ridiculous bigotry. He’s surely the biggest a-hole on the planet, and Wise perfectly nails the smarminess.

The best part about “Newsreaders” is that it never seems to run out of hilarious ways to spoof the news and the blathering heads reporting it.

Photo courtesy Adult Swim


12 a.m. Thursdays on Cartoon Network

3.5 stars