DayBreak OC gets a bullet in the head

Figures that yesterday---when I wrote this Heard Mentality blog post about the one good reason to watch DayBreak OC---would be the same day KDOC owner Bert Ellis decided to mercifully shoot his broken-legged horse in the head.

Yep---DayBreak OC, the daily one-hour comedy/variety show that began life in September, 2007 with the promise of bringing serious all-Orange County broadcast news to our 3 million residents---has been canceled. Ellis cites the incredibly shrinking economy as reason for the axing, which, according to today's Register, means that more than two dozen DayBreak employees are now jobless. Well, as much as I've criticized DayBreak's utter worthlessness and amateurishness, that's certainly nothing to laugh at.

Also sucks that the DayBreak crew seemed to have been caught totally by surprise by Ellis' decision. Co-anchors Shally Zomorodi and Ben Aaron signed off from yesterday's broadcast teasing stories and interviews that had been planned for today's show. It was hard not to feel a twinge of sympathy for them last night as I watched my TiVoed recording of Tuesday's DayBreak, knowing the news they, at that time, had yet to hear.

Seems odd, though, that Ellis would yank the show so soon a mere five weeks after switching DayBreak from what had been a two-hour 6-8 a.m. format to a reduced one-hour program that aired at 10 a.m. When I interviewed him last month, Ellis told me that ratings for the revamped 10 a.m. DayBreak were “significantly higher” than they had been during its previous time slot. But this was obviously due to the fact that more eyeballs were open at 10 a.m. than they were at 6 a.m. And as far as advertising went, well.....when one of their most-aired spots consisted of people looking directly into the camera and berating viewers for sitting on their couches like lazy slugs because they never finished high school, that wasn't merely annoying, that was insulting.

But Ellis vows (threats?) that DayBreak will return in one form or another. As posted on the KDOC website, Ellis says "As soon as we see a turn-around to this current media recession, we intend to resume our newscast." Considering that most reports I've read have the rotten economy lasting for some time, that could take awhile. But by then, maybe Ben Aaron will actually be funny.....

Also, that R. Scott DayBreak performance I blurbed about in yesterday's Heard Mentality blog, which was to have happened tomorrow, obviously ain't happening now. But you can still see the wondrous keyboardist tomorrow night at the Cellar in Long Beach, when he sits in with the equally fabulous New Fidelity. (Bonus: the amazing Greater California are also on the bill.)


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