Robservations on the media beat:
The ideal holiday gift for any Chicago Cubs fan: Pat Hughes, radio voice of the World Champions on CBS Radio sports/talk WSCR AM 670, has just released “The Chicago Cubs Win the World Series!” It’s a 70-minute CD featuring the 2016 season’s greatest moments as broadcast on The Score by Hughes and color commentator Ron Coomer. “If you love the Cubs, you will love this CD,” promises Hughes. It’s available online for $19.95 at baseballvoices.com.
Disco Demolition, the night that rocked old Comiskey Park and the whole music world, gets another turn in the national spotlight this week. Comedy Central’s “Drunk History” will serve up its version of the ill-fated 1979 White Sox promotion/radio stunt that made Steve Dahl a star. Premiering at 9:30 p.m. Tuesday, the “Drunk History” segment features an inebriated Bob Odenkirk recounting the fiasco. Colin Hanks plays Dahl.
Look for Rodrigo Arana to exit Telemundo Chicago WSNS-Channel 44 after two years as sports anchor at the Spanish-language station. Insiders say he’s expected to obtain an early release to pursue play-by-play opportunities. Arana’s departure closely will follow that of 15-year veteran reporter Alba Mendiola, who headed the Telemundo Responde consumer investigative unit. Mendiola, who also hosted the public affairs show “Enfoque Chicago,” left to become a Spanish teacher. Oversight of Telemundo Chicago just shifted to David Doebler, president and general manager of NBC-owned WMAQ-Channel 5, who took over from ousted station boss Chris McDonnell.
Dorothy Storck, the former reporter for Chicago’s American and Chicago Today who died in 2015, is the namesake of a new journalism award. Chicago Journalists Association is offering a $1,000 prize for best columns written by a print, broadcast or online journalist during the year. The Dorothy Storck Award is open to journalists in Illinois and northwest Indiana. Deadline for entries is December 31. For rules and entry information see chicagojournalists.net.
Toni Falvo, dean of Chicago television ratings analysts, is stepping down as senior vice president of research at Tribune Broadcasting, where she oversaw 42 stations. Falvo says she’s “taking a break” at year’s end to deal with family matters but may return to work at some point. Before joining Tribune Broadcasting in 2013, Falvo held top research posts at NBC 5 and ABC-owned WLS-Channel 7. There’s no one better in the business.
One year after he underwent brain surgery for a rare arterial venous malformation, beloved Chicago TV legend Ben Hollis is back in action. On January 21 and 22, he’ll appear onstage in an autobiographical one-man show titled “How The Beatles Nearly Ruined My Life . . . and David Bowie Saved It.” The former host of “Wild Chicago” and “Ben Loves Chicago” calls it “an evening of Wild Chicago Ben Backstory, coming of age stories, musical memories and original tunes.” Performances will be at the Skokie Theatre, 7924 Lincoln Avenue, Skokie. For ticket information see skokietheatre.org.
Genuflections: Famous Folks Talk About Growing Up Catholic is the new book written by Chicago reporter and editor Robert Herguth. Published by Rick Kaempfer and David Stern’s Chicago-based Eckhartz Press, the book features confessions from dozens of celebrities on how they were influenced by their Catholic upbringing. Subjects include Mario Andretti, Jimmy Breslin, Jerry Brown, James Carville, Billy Corgan, Dana Delaney, Brian Dennehy, Mike Ditka, Bianca Jagger, Paul Ryan, Don Shula, Isiah Thomas, Bobby Vinton and Larry Wilmore. Herguth recently returned to the Sun-Times as an investigative reporter after a stint with the Better Government Association.