|Source: CBS News-|
Edward R. Murrow was sort of the Mike Wallace of the 1950s, or perhaps Mike Wallace was the Ed Murrow post-Murrow. But what I mean by that is Murrow was a very intelligent and great journalist and interviewer who preferred hard news, but was so great at what he did and such an intelligent interviewer, that he could interview practically anyone important that is. And entertainers are important, not as important as I believe they should be and definitely not as important as others people seem to believe they are. But they are important in society and life wouldn’t be worth living as much without them.
As much as Ed Murrow could interview anyone and that probably included pro athletes as well, hard news was his steak and potatoes. What kept him fed and what kept in journalism. If it was his choice, he probably doesn’t take Person to Person and make that his show. Which was sort of late night TV back in the 1950s, perhaps a prime time version of The Today Show or Good Morning America. Shows that are generally about making people feel good and telling them about things that they follow in their free time and generally not hard news shows.
But Murrow was also if not the most popular figure at CBS in the 1950s, certainly one of them news or otherwise and CBS was going to use him as much as possible to help their network. And they knew how good of an interviewer he was and how he and Person to Person could help their network. And that Murrow also had See it Now as part of CBS News, so he was going to do his hard news show anyway. That is why someone who was the quality journalist of an Ed Murrow, is interviewing the Goddess of Hollywood at the time Marilyn Monroe in 1955.
CBS News: Person To Person- Edward R. Murrow: Interviewing Marilyn Monroe, April 8th, 1955