LEX 18 News ended an evening recap of yesterday’s coverage of the Comair Flight 5191 crash for the live broadcast of the prime-time Emmy Awards. The annual TV awards show opened with shots of host Conan O’Brien bouncing inside a plane before it crashed on an island in a spoof of ABC’s hit show Lost.
WLEX president and general manager Tim Gilbert, who was home watching the telecast with his family, said he was “stunned” by the introduction; if station managers had known about the intro before the broadcast, Lexington viewers wouldn’t have seen it, he said.
“It was a live telecast -- we were completely helpless,” Gilbert said of the Emmys. “By the time we began to react, it was over. At the station, we were as horrified as they were at home.”
He said he’ll complain to NBC, but he said an apology won’t make up for insensitivity.
“They could have killed the opening and it wouldn’t have hurt the show at all,” Gilbert said. “We wish somebody had thought this through. It’s somewhere between ignorance and incompetence.”