On Sunday evening in southwest Philadelphia, a deadly shooting broke out in front of a deli. Police say they recovered around fifty shell casings at the crime scene, and that it appeared multiple guns were fired. Of the six young men who were shot, one was pronounced dead at the scene, and five other victims were rushed to area hospitals. No one's sure yet if this was a random drive-by event or a deliberate ambush, but it's certainly a tragic case of real-life violence that's become all too familiar these days.
Maybe THAT'S why Philadelphia TV news anchor Joyce Evans made the incredibly strange decision to promote the story by flippantly comparing the shooting to Breaking Bad.
I mean, a sense of boredom over yet another murder is the only reason I can imagine why Evans would have tweeted the following last night: "Thought ‘Breaking Bad’ was hot last Sunday? See who’s breakin’ bad in SW Philly leavin’ 6 people SHOT - Tonite at Ten!"
Or maybe she thought it was the only way to get viewers' attention? If so, she certainly got it once this started making the rounds on Twitter:
However, I doubt it was quite the reaction she was hoping for. Viewers responded with immediate criticism, because … well, because WHAT THE HELL, right? It's terrible enough that she tries to make a story about a shooting sound like entertainment, but her slangy tone makes me cringe for the family of the 23-year-old victim. Who was breakin' bad, leavin' a guy lyin' in a pool of blood after bein' riddled with multiple bullets in the back and chest? Hoo-WEE, check out this RED HOT episode tonite!
If there's one thing I've learned about public relations gaffes, the best way you can start making amends is by issuing a sincere mea culpa. If I were this Fox affiliate anchor, I'm pretty sure I would have apologized for my insensitive words as soon as it became obvious how many people were offended by the tweet. Not Joyce Evans, though! She dug in her heels and stubbornly insisted that she'd been making a culturally relevant comparison all along:
Riiiiiiiight. That was her point, you guys! If you thought an AMC drama about a high school chemistry teacher turned meth kingpin was hot, wait until you hear about six people being gunned down in public!
I'm guessing Joyce Evans will think twice before comparing a tragic news story to a popular television show again, but who knows -- maybe she'll get some creative motivation from Twitter. Last night #JoyceEvansTweets became a trending topic, with many examples of similar promo messages she can share in the future:
What do you think of this news anchor's tweet? Poor taste, or no big deal?
Image via Fox