Last night, The Daily Show honed in on rising Fox News star Megyn Kelly, and how she may or may not exemplify the channel's purported separation of news and opinion. With or without facts. Or sleeves!
At issue is whether Fox News's daily news coverage reflects the same biases as its nightly opinion shows with the likes of Glenn Beck and Bill O'Reilly. (Spoiler: it does). Kelly, a frequent sparring partner of O'Reilly, is an ideal exemplar for this argument: A rising star at the network, she was recently given her own news show to anchor at 1pm.
And when it comes to health care reform, Kelly is "balancing out" a dreamed-up network starring... Angela Davis.
Kelly also happens to be an approximation of the network's feminine ideal: conventionally attractive, sassy but still cheerfully pushing the party line, and in the words of Troy Patterson in a recent Slate piece, a "post-feminist news babe." What does that mean? Patterson suggests its that she's "secure enough in her intelligence to be comfortably upfront about working her sex appeal," citing several examples of Kelly heartily laughing along or preening when guests or colleagues complimented her appearance. Like Sarah Palin, but without the mangled sentences.
Related: The Fox On Fox [Slate]