Terry Savage, Dan Jiggetts, Mike Hegedus and Mike North
There's not much to add to Phil Rosenthal's exhaustive deconstruction of "Monsters and Money in the Morning," which debuted Monday, or to Ed Sherman's Q&A with host Mike North. The four hosts of the new morning show on CBS-owned WBBM-Channel 2 -- North, Dan Jiggetts, Terry Savage and Mike Hegedus -- proved themselves to be sufficiently caffeinated and articulate to pull off the two-hour gabfest without committing any major gaffes.
Conceived as a low-budget alternative to traditional local morning news shows (airing from 5 to 7 a.m. weekdays), I'd call it a work in progress worth keeping an eye on.
The biggest surprise was the dominant role played by Jiggetts, who emerged first among equals as he occupied center screen, introduced each topic and steered every discussion. He may have been an offensive tackle for the Bears, but on this show, he's definitely the quarterback.
Susan Carlson, the show's perky news anchor, came off a tad too perky with lead-ins to her headlines such as: "Here's what's happening as you're starting to turn on your coffee maker this morning," and "As you're munchin' on your toast, here's what's going on . . ." (Whoa! Can she see me scratching myself, too?)
Viewers could also live without North's bombastic on-set commercials (the equivalent of his "live reads" on radio) and shameless pleas for a "cereal sponsor." But then again, "Money" is in the title of the show -- and isn't that what it's really all about?
Robservations on the media beat:
"I sure loved him the first time around.‚ Now Fogie's back in Chicago -- right where he belongs -- on the legendary‚ WLS.‚ Talk about a perfect, yummy‚ combination, with Greg Brown and Dick Biondi, and‚ literally all the best music. I'm telling you, it's the most mouth-watering deep-dish in town!‚ And if I can provide a little sauce, I'm thrilled to stir that pot.‚ Chefs LaCrosse and Damsky‚ have cooked up something really delicious here, I think."