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Fast-talking Santos impresses in Ch.4 debut

By Alan Pergament

The debut of Channel 4's new meteorologist Todd Santos this morning was almost as perfect as the weekend weather, which passed much too quickly.

But not as quickly as Santos speaks.

When the sharply-dressed Santos talked about the station's RPM or Rapid Prediction Model I thought the initials stood for his Rapid Performance Model. 

He speaks as quickly as Channel 4 weekend sports anchor Lauren Bril, but his diction is much clearer and he is much more understandable.

Still, I'd slow him down a bit so I could actually take in all he is saying about the weather.

Santos effortlessly makes transitions from satellite map to satellite map, only occasionally pausing to take a breath.

Introduced by co-anchors Nalina Shaprio and Jordan Williams, Santos illiustrated on the 6 a.m. edition of "Wake Up" that he is at ease with happy talk, which is especially important in the morning.

He said he was "looking forward to the challenges of forecasting in Western New York and being part of the area."

Then the former Weather Channel meteorologist explained he already was a part of the area, having married a Western New York woman, having a reception at Pearl Street and visiting here for 15 years.

When Williams told Santos that he knew about Buffaloi's crazy weather, Santos said: "I do know what I was getting into. But this weekend it was easy to get lulled into this sense of comfort."

Then he predicted rain.

Later, he cracked this past weekend "was the ultimate welcome to Western New York for me. It's all about me. I'm just kidding."

He knows the good weather can't last.

"It's not the winter we worry about, it's the late fall. That when the good stuff comes. I call it good stuff."

OK, I'll quibble a little with that. We do worry about the winter. But that's a minor quibble. Santos looks like the right stuff.

Santos' debut is part one of Channel 4's two-part plan to challenge Channel 2's "Daybreak" for the morning lead. He premiered a week before Teresa Weakley comes aboard as the "Wake Up" co-anchor alongside Williams.

Santos will be a tough act to follow.

I don't know if using a flub from a president who belongs to the same party is the way to go, but mayoral candidate Bernie Tolbert certainly will get some needed attention from the 30-second ad carried on "Wake Up!" that starts with President Obama calling Congressman Brian Higgins the mayor instead of Byron Brown during his appearanace at the University at Buffalo last Thursday.

"We'd like to forget it, too," says the announcer who voices the ad before talking about some of Mayor Brown's supposed failures in addressing crime and schools.

The ad ends by saying "just remember Bernie Tolbert for mayor."

If I were writing that ad, I would have mentioned Tolbert more quickly since his name recognition remains low. It would have been better if it had started by saying if Bernie Tolbert had been in the mayor's office for eight years, everyone would know his name and then proceed to explain how he would differ from Mayor Brown.

OK, I admit I'm old. I didn't need to tune into the Video Music Awards on MTV Sunday night to be reminded of that.  After I watched the first hour, I felt like I needed to take a shower to wipe off the filthy performance by Miley Cyrus, who was breaking bad. She used a foam finger (and Robin Thicke) as props. She got what she wanted this morning -- people were talking about her on TV and the radio and at watercoolers after what appeared to be her audition for a porn career. Rather than take a shower, I switched over to HBO's "The Newsroom" because I badly needed some classy TV.

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Television | TV news
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