The Washington Post

Political talk shows going “all in”


Some folks think the networks may be pressing too hard to come up with hip names for the gabfests.

No more “Today” or “Good Morning America” or “The View” or even “Morning Joe.” And no more names of the stars, such as “Ellen” or “Oprah.”

But the more recent titles, we’re seeing on Twitter this week, have people wondering who comes up with these monikers.

Last summer brought “The Cycle,” on MSNBC, which we had thought clearly referred to the 24-hour news cycle or, this time of year, hitting for the cycle (single, double, triple and home run) in one game.

“Obviously not named by a woman,” as our colleague Karen Tumulty noted.

Then, CNN recently titled former ABC White House reporter Jake Tapper’s new show, “The Lead.” That, as most folks would understand, refers to the top part of a news story or perhaps of a news program, as in the top news of the day.

Of course, if you pronounce it differently, it could appear to have been named for a heavy ductile metal that can poison you.

And now, MSNBC steals femme fatale Paula Broadwell’s title of her book about former CIA director (and lover) David Petraeus, and calls The Nation editor at large Chris Hayes’ new show “All In.”

This obviously refers to the poker term for betting all your chips, right?

Al Kamen, an award-winning columnist on the national staff of The Washington Post, created the “In the Loop” column in 1993.


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