More Points on The Point

When I first “relaunched” (read: updated on a regular basis) URBMN back in late September, I talked about CBC’s latest attempt at afternoon show fodder, The Point.  I had hoped that the show wouldn’t “go completely shit within the week.”  It didn’t.  It went completely shit within a few weeks.

I’ve given up on The Point.  Aamer Haleem is too eager to please.  The music doesn’t go beyond the currently hyped college rock/pop of the moment.  The panel discussions are inane.  In short, The Point is the typical overearnest CBC Radio One panel show.  Things that most annoy me about The Point:

Aamer Haleem calls The Point‘s voicemail segment an “audio blog.”  It’s not an audio blog if public radio is the first place in which the segment appears, Haleem.  If The Point‘s phone line counts as an audio blog, Cross Country Checkup has been liveblogging in audio since 1965.

On top of that, the “have your say, Canada!” voicemail segment seems lifted from Richardson’s Roundup/The Roundup.  It doesn’t even have a catchy phone number like 1-800-SAD-GOAT.  I’m sorry, 1-888-91-POINT doesn’t cut it.

Is this show supposed to be current affairs?  If it is, why the hell was The Point talking about who the best Bond was when I listened to it on Friday?  The show devoted a week to “who’s the best Bond?”  That’s important to anyone?

Topics like the online selling of secondhand burial plots are what I hate most about The Point.  The story is just a public relations stunt made legitimate by CBC Radio One.  The segment comes across as glib and doesn’t tie in well to the larger issue of global financial uncertainty.  At least when The Agenda with Steve Paikin covers current affairs, it doesn’t try to sugarcoat its topics.

I prefer CBC’s specialist shows, like White Coat, Black Art and Quirks & Quarks.  While those shows are sometimes personality-driven, they’re at least about something.  The Point is about nothing.

The Point is yet another one of those shows where the format is built around the host, rather than the host fitting the format.  The Point suffers from The Hour Syndrome, wherein a younger host tries to make CBC programming more “hip.”

This tack fails most of the time, since the antithesis of being cool is trying one’s ass off to be cool.  Also, the “younger, hipper” hosts tend to push 40 and aren’t that cool in the first place.  Why does CBC Radio have such a conservative programming strategy?  Did you know CBC Radio used to have a horror program way back when?

One day CBC Radio will figure out how to market to a younger audience without aping college radio and/or trying too hard to appeal to “the kids.”  It sure as hell isn’t going to happen with The Point.

Cameron Archer

Cameron Archer

Owner/Writer at Gloryosky
Cameron Archer runs this site, and is a freelance arts writer. He has contributed to Canadian Screenwriter since 2011. He is a CMG Freelance member.
Cameron Archer