America's Talking may have only been on air from 1994 to 1996, but it was actually the best cable channel that ever existed.
Created by NBC as a sister channel of sorts to CNBC, America's Talking was critical to the cable news landscape we know today. Then the president of CNBC, Roger Ailes ran the network, pitching it as the cable news answer to talk radio and attempting to tap into the same audience. When a network shakeup led to NBC turning America's Talking into MSNBC, Ailes quit CNBC and went onto launch Fox News.
But America's Talking was something special, featuring a mix of now familiar talent (Chris Matthews and Steve Doocy) — and some truly insane content.
1. It featured Internet reaction from the "Information SUPERHIGHWAY."
2. Reacting with viewers meant that hosts had to deal with people like this man who ran over his girlfriends' cat on Valentine's Day.
3. It had this AMAZING segment on trying to break an "indestructible" broom. Really watch this.
4. Roger Ailes had an hour-long talk show where he interviewed celebrities such as Conan O'Brien, Ted Nugent, Patty Duke, etc. Here's him interviewing singer Judy Collins.
5. They featured this segment where you could win a Super Nintendo by pouring milk down your pants and being pied in the face.
6. They interviewed the cast of Cats when a bad snow storm caused the show to cancel a performance for the first time in more than a decade.
7. The network held a contest to see who would host one of their shows. Stand-up comic Bill McCuddy beat out 10,000 entrants and faced a celebrity panel of judges. Ailes made the final decision to make him a the host.
8. The channel gave Chris Matthews his first TV show, which eventually moved to CNBC, and then to MSNBC, where it is now known as Hardball today.
Andrew Kaczynski is a political reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
Contact Andrew Kaczynski at email@example.com.
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