HLN is in the midst of a wholesale rebranding, and, on Wednesday, the network unveiled a slate of new shows that, while they don't exactly put the "news" in "cable news network," certainly put something into something.
CNN's sister station is revamping itself as "the first TV home for the social media generation." What that generation seems to want, if the new shows are evidence, are game shows, cartoons and apps.
Here are just some of the new shows (the descriptions come from HLN's press release):
"Keywords"—A game show of search and tag trivia for internet addicts. We put your browser history to the test by challenging you to guess a search term from five keyword clues. Celebrities, song lyrics, ailments, gifs, memes, photobombs—everything is fair game. Created by HLN program development.
"I Can Haz NewsToons"—Finally, a place on TV for social media’s best satire cartoons. We’ll scour the internet to present the most original e-cards, caricatures and doodles, and for the first time bring people's favorite political and social cartoonists from the world of print to TV. Produced and created by Fred Siebert (Adventure Time, Cartoon Hangover)
"One.Click.Away"—The untold stories behind the online classifieds…the world's biggest yard sale. Going beyond the hyperlinks, HLN digs into such stories as the unused wedding dress for sale on Craigslist and the people behind those strange and hilarious roommate ads. Online classifieds greatest stories are now just One Click Away. Created by John D. Williams Jr. (Author, former president of the National SCRABBLE Association)
HLN chief Albie Hecht told the Hollywood Reporter more about his strategy:
Our target is 35-38, the people immersed in social media but also avid television watchers. They may not watch TV news, per se, but they watch a lot of TV and we want to tap into their interests. And I think the important part of winning this audience over is by putting the process of social media on TV, not behind the curtain.