CNN's coverage of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 has reached such astounding stupidity in the past five weeks that it accomplished something previously unimaginable: uniting Bill O’Reilly and Rachel Maddow on the same side of an issue. Both cable news hosts think their counterparts at CNN should shut up about the missing plane — not that Jeff Zucker cares. CNN’s ratings are through the roof, and if it takes blind speculation or goofy props to maintain those numbers, then — dammit! — that’s what viewers will get. It's been 39 days since Flight 370 disappeared, and we still know little about what happened, but CNN keeps talking, and in doing so, embarrassing itself. Here are the network's worst moments:
The "Supernatural" Hypothesis: More than any other anchor, Don Lemon has turned himself into a punchline during CNN’s incessant Flight 370 coverage (Wolf Blitzer was already there). Lemon's first worst moment came nine days after the plane disappeared, when he "just put it out there" that maybe something "supernatural" happened.
The Black Hole Hypothesis: A few days later, Lemon showed that he hadn't learned his lesson by asking a former U.S. Department of Transportation inspector general if a black hole might have sucked the plane out of the sky.
Not a Plane, a Simulator: In late March, the network tried like hell to rent a real Boeing-777 to supplement its coverage. It failed and settled for a flight simulator in Canada that it's desperately hoarding to keep other networks away.
The Toy: CNN’s attempt to produce an actual Boeing seems a lot less ridiculous when you see how silly Don Lemon looks playing with a toy plane at his desk.
The Countdown Clock: At one point, CNN presented this countdown clock showing that only 17 days remained until the plane's black-box battery died, making its recovery nearly impossible. Ignoring the New Year's-ification of a human tragedy, it was impossible to know the precise time at which the battery would die. The clock was nonsense.
"Zombie Plane": Zombie plane? Zombie plane! Quick, someone call Rick Grimes.
Trash Talk: In his second bit bashing CNN for blathering about Flight 370, Jon Stewart gathered together a dozen or so examples of talking heads speculating about stuff floating in the ocean. It was almost always trash, which of course, led to a CNN obsession with sea trash.
"Breaking": Thirty one days into the mystery and CNN reports on this bit of "breaking news": "Families Frustrated by Media Coverage."
A Confession: The final embarrassing CNN incident didn't happen on air. In a March 17 New York Times article about the networks' coverage of the flight, an executive anonymously "acknowledged this was not really a story where reporters have been able to advance the known facts much." But, as of this writing, CNN is still going.
Most Viewed Stories
Monica Foy, the Victim of a Terrifying Right-Wing Internet-Shaming, Speaks Out
How Captain America’s Stuffed Cast Caused a Marvel Civil War
Miley Cyrus’s Dead Petz Is Hard to Like, or Even Endure
Some Hero Drew Game of Thrones People As Bob’s Burgers People
What It Means to Be Thick and Fit on Instagram
Listen to Janet Jackson’s Very Lovable ‘Unbreakable’
Watch Young Angelina Jolie Own This Acting Class
How Trump Outmaneuvered the GOP Again
The Iran Deal and the End of the Israel Lobby
7 Books You Need to Read This September
Latest News from Daily IntelligencerRowan County Gives Out First Marriage Licenses to Same-Sex Couples [Updated]
Meanwhile, Kim Davis is still in jail.Monica Foy, the Victim of a Terrifying Right-Wing Internet-Shaming, Speaks Out
“It just takes one bullet to kill me from one gun from one person, and that one person is out there. So no, I will never feel safe. Not for me, not for my family, not for anyone I know who has publicly supported me.”BBC Talks to Expert About Scott Walker’s Bald Spot
"It's almost void of hair completely, so it is possible he did have an accident at some point in his life."Man Indicted After Butt-Dialing Burglary Plans to 911
Authorities were suspicious when a burglary happened that sounded similar to one they had overheard on a call earlier that day.Clinton on Emails: ‘I Am Sorry That This Has Been Confusing to People’
“And I take responsibility and it wasn’t the best choice.”Letter From a City Buried in Garbage — and on the Brink of Civil War
In Beirut, the corrupt government can't figure out how to pick up the garbage. Is this the final straw for a nation long teetering on the edge of violence?The Iran Deal and the End of the Israel Lobby
There is no more "Israel lobby"; there is a red Israel lobby and a blue one.At Burning Man’s Airport, There Are Propeller People and Jet People
"The people who take advantage are the charter guys bringing in the rich — I heard $5,000 a flight.”
Meanwhile, thousands of migrants wait, wondering whether they will even reach safety.Brooklyn Teacher Crashes Drone Into Stands During U.S. Open Match
The seats were empty, so no one was hurt.
An offer they might not refuse.Jeb Bush Sides With Both Same-Sex Couples and Kentucky County Clerk
Then suggests a compromise Kim Davis already rejected.One Student Killed, Two Injured in Shooting at Sacramento College
The shooter is still at large.How Ben Carson Surged by Staying Under the Radar
Since he doesn’t act like a politician and won’t attack his fellow candidates, no one has figured out how to stop him.Biden Says He Still Doesn’t Know If He Has the ‘Emotional Energy’ to Run in 2016
In his first intentionally public remarks on the matter.How Trump Outmaneuvered the GOP Again
In promising not to run as a third-party candidate, the Donald gave a little and got a lot.Rick Perry Reveals That He Doesn’t Know How Clocks Work and That He’s Staying in the 2016 Race
"A broken clock is right once a day."Two Topless Women Are Assaulted, Another Is Arrested in Times Square
There were two separate incidents involving "desnudas" on Wednesday night.Kentucky County Clerk Who Refused to Issue Marriage Licenses Sent to Jail [Updated]
She will be released as soon as she agrees to comply with the court's order.French Authorities Say Flaperon Definitely Belongs to Missing Malaysian Airlines Jet MH370
They backed up the original assessment by Malaysian authorities.