I do enjoy Keith Olbermann on MSNBC's "Countdown." But I'm always glad when he goes on vacation and Rachel Maddow sits in for him. She's a tart, smart liberal, and she always has a wry smile in her voice. When she asks the experts those loaded, heavily spun "Countdown" questions, she's clearly having a good old time. Maddow also knows how to think fast on her feet, a quality that is surprisingly rare in the world of media talking heads.
Turns out Maddow, 35, is getting her own series on the male-dominated cable channel beginning Sept. 8, in the 9 p.m. timeslot now presided over by Dan Abrams. (Abrams will continue to appear on NBC and MSNBC shows.) Maddow's show will arrive just in time for the final stages of the presidential campaign -- definitely a smart move by MSNBC -- and Maddow is sure to make the channel's lineup into a happy nightly liberal-a-thon. Network president Phil Griffin tells the New York Times, “This just completes our prime-time lineup. Our lineup makes sense now.”
By the way, the ever-mischievous Maddow, who has been a host on Air America radio since 2004, is an out lesbian who splits her time between New York and western Massachusetts (where she worked for WRNX in Amherst and WRSI in Northampton). She lives with her partner, artist Susan Mikula. She doesn't fit the stereotype of the female news personality in any way, and I really think -- and hope -- the world is ready for her. What do you think?