Nudity is everywhere these days, and there is just about any kind you may or may not want, so why does Naked News continue to endure some 14 years after it burst onto the scene in 1999?
If you have no idea what I'm talking about... here's a cheat sheet. Naked News is a 20-minute daily internet broadcast program that presents current events delivered by a crew of delightfully naked and cheerful women. Over the course of a decade the show has evolved from a five-minute snippet delivered by a cast of one (yours truly); it grew to its longer format with four strong iconic women within a year. In those early days the familiar news style was very formal and the women imitated that so perfectly that the nudity was indeed shocking. It was an impish poke at what had become a slightly stuffy industry with an additional satirical bent in the form of gleeful political jokes embedded in the graphics - a frequently missed subtlety. A CNN executive once stated that the industry could take its cue from Naked News, a thought that was widely misunderstood and probably meant to express the need for a break in tradition to keep the audience engaged. That break in tradition was further carried out by such shows as The Daily Show and The Colbert Report.
Today the Naked News program, under its current producer, has expanded its program to offer 10 colourful hosts presenting a wide variety of topics. Some new offerings include Nerd specialist Kat Curtis, and many segments that include interacting with the public either topless or nude, plus interviews with authors, musicians and performers.
Naked News is a genuine child of the internet, its existence justified through the simple democracy of people choosing to watch. Perhaps a viewer watches at first out of curiosity, then many stay and enjoy the rarity of nudity personified, not objectified. It is certainly a friendly and welcoming environment, where you also get caught up on what's going on in your world. Nothing wrong with that.
Over time of course, audience desires and expectations change, especially now in the face of social media where the viewer is accustomed to having a participatory voice. While Naked News enjoys a loyal core following, there is a struggle to reinvent ourselves and stay relevant. The question of whether that is possible at all, is explored quite thoroughly by the docuseries Naked News Uncovered by AllScreen Entertainment airing on Superchannel.
Through the deft touch and relentless gaze of Barrie Cohen and Allan Novak, the last remaining veil shrouding Naked News is swept aside to expose what was once a closed system. Now available to the public, for better or for worse, are the inner workings of the once wildly successful Naked News company. Allscreen Entertainment is presenting the public with a clear eyed, objective view of our news organization's daily life. Previously unseen are the elements that bring you Naked News, from the invisible owner to the producer, the editing and camera departments, and of course, the writers. In this era of hyper sharing through social media and reality shows, it appears to be time to share with our fans and perhaps new friends, who we really are. It is a risk of course, to spread your secrets before the world, and I do flinch from the unsparing editing, but at the end of the day, I truly have nothing to hide.
Naked News Uncovered airs on Mondays at 11 pm EST on Super Channel.
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