Bad TV Partnerships
ANDERSON COOPER AND AARON BROWN
From Sept. 11, 2001, to Nov. 7, 2005, NewsNight With Aaron Brown ran in the prime-time slot on CNN. However, following rising star Anderson Cooper's noteworthy coverage of Hurricane Katrina, CNN execs decided to let Cooper share co-anchoring duties with Brown. Critics were initially skeptical of the addition, criticizing the show for its new "cute and unnecessary elements." After just a month on the job—which saw plenty of awkwardness between the two hosts— Brown was gone, and replaced by Cooper. Cooper went on to become the face of CNN, while Brown was basically held hostage, since he was still under contract with CNN until July 2007. He ended up teaching, spending a semester as the John J. Rhodes Chair in Public Policy and American Institutions at Arizona State University's Walter Cronkite School of Journalism, and hitting the links. "There's nothing like getting paid—it's even better to get paid and not go to work," said Brown in 2007. He added, "I was very uncomfortable at the end with where they wanted it to go. I didn't think the viewers were behind me when we did dumb television."