Media Watch

Jim Nintzel's new show and more


Tucson Weekly political columnist Jim Nintzel was a fixture on KUAT TV 6's Friday Roundtable, the end-of-week version of Arizona Illustrated, at first as a regular guest on the Bill Buckmaster hosted program and then eventually as its host until Arizona Public Media management abandoned the format in June.

But once that decision was made, Nintzel put the wheels in motion to revive the program in some capacity. The result: Zona Politics with Jim Nintzel debuted in its Sunday morning at 9:30 time slot on KGUN TV 9, just in time for the home stretch of the midterm elections.

"It's a similar format to what we were doing at AZPM—recap the stories of the week and the political currents behind them," said Nintzel via email. "We'll be posting the show at"

Nintzel, the 2014 Arizona Newspaper Association Journalist of the Year, has utilized the assistance of a number of contributors to get the program off the ground.

"I have run into a remarkable group of people who want to make this work," Nintzel said. "(Journal Broadcast Group Tucson Television GM) Jim Arnold at KGUN has been very supportive. Danny Vinik, Jim Rundel and their crew at the creative agency are putting in an amazing amount of work on the directing, editing and website. We're filming at Access Tucson, which has gone out of their way to help make this work. Patch-Clark Design helped come up with ideas for the set. Joe Tarver and Vince Rabago helped with the legal work. Will Conroy at the Arizona Inn hosted an announcement party for us.

"This is an independent production, so I've incorporated a non-profit journalism organization called the Arizona Watchdog Alliance as the production company for the show and website. I've got a fiscal sponsor, John Dougherty's non-profit Arizona Center for Investigative Journalism. So if folks want to support the show through a tax-deductible contribution, they can visit And of course, if folks want to advertise, they can reach me at, (or the website contact,"


It's been awhile since the Media Watch Curse reared its ugly head. The Media Watch Curse is a self-named occurrence where an individual featured in the column is out of a job shortly thereafter, or even in the deadline window between completion and print.

The late Randy Garsee was perhaps the most noteworthy. The former KOLD TV 13 news anchor was the feature subject in a Media Watch column, and a week later was out of a job. That's probably the most prominent incident, although it has happened a few times to other unfortunate folks over the years.

The curse has been dormant for awhile, until last week, when feature subject Matt Condie went from relishing the unique qualities of trying to make a weeknight 10 p.m. to midnight local talk show work on independent AM radio frequency KEVT 1210 AM to off the air and gone from the station altogether.

Condie did not return efforts to comment on the situation, even in light of circulating rumors he might be in line for another opportunity elsewhere, and station manager Jim Parisi did not comment on the employee-related issue.

KEVT is playing syndicated fare from Fox Sports in that time slot.


KGUN TV 9 morning news anchor Cory Marshall concluded her final day at the station Wednesday, Oct. 22. Marshall co-hosted the ABC affiliate's morning news block for two years.

According to an internal memo announcing her departure, she is leaving for a reporting position in a top-25 market.

Marshall's two-year stint is common in transitional markets like Tucson. For reporters with big market aspirations, the rule of thumb is to hone one's craft for two years before searching for opportunities in a larger market. Eventually, the hope goes, one will find a good, well-paying fit once the market jumping runs its course.


Former KFMA FM 102.1 morning show hosts Fook and Mishell bolted Tucson for an afternoon gig in Salt Lake City. The deal was hush-hush at the time of their departure from the Lotus-owned new rocker this summer, but once details were finalized, the proclamation was announced in a press release that incorporated the imagination of a sophomore boy. Apologies. Given the gems in the press release announcing the hiring, that last sentence amounts to being an insult for sophomore boys.

For unimaginative made-up press release quotes, look no further than this gem from program director Sue Kelley.

"This team is 'Fooking' great!" Seriously, that's the lead quote in the press release, picked up by numerous trade publications announcing their position in mid-days on Salt Lake alternative format KHTB 94.9 FM. So yes, someone actually wrote that, and a person in a position of management agreed to have their name tied to it.

Even the hosts couldn't avoid their own press release gems.

Said Fook, "We're excited to bring a morning show to middays and can't wait to get all up in Salt Lake's biz," because clearly, when folks along the Wasatch Front discover the mid-day tandem's desire to get up in one's "biz," they'll be flipping that terrestrial radio dial to listen to what getting up in one's "biz" sounds like every opportunity they get.

Meanwhile, KFMA's search for a morning show replacement continues. I hope they hire someone named "Schit," or something equally suggestive. Imagine the clever press release quote potential for that.

Note to very helpful Lotus PR folks. You can do a better "fooking" job on your press releases than the unimaginative Cumulus-run cluster in SLC.

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