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From rest to exaltation: this is how television debates have changed


TV is a mirror of the world and the world is a mirror of TV: in the evolution of television talk shows, the drift from the reign of reason to that of pure emotion can be seen

The fact that the presenter smoked a pipe is already a clear indication that we are talking about another era.

La clave

, by the recently deceased Asturian José Luis Balbín, symbolized for a long time, and continues to symbolize, quality television (64 episodes can be seen in that treasure cave that is the RTVE Play platform).

And nicotine as a symbol of thought.

A calm debate where the pundits respected their turns, spoke slowly and deeply, without raising their voices and without fear of being interrupted (that horrendous television mantra was not yet known: "excuse me, let me talk, that I have not told you disrupted").

In the middle of the talk, a film was projected (as in another nicotinic and cult program:

How great is the cinema

, by José Luis Garci).

They debated, in

The Key

, with that typical prosody of the time, with intellectual pretensions, sometimes too enthralled, very anachronistic seen from the current nonchalance.

There were, above all, gentlemen, very serious gentlemen, with some exceptions of very serious ladies, like the legendary anarchist Federica Monstseny.

Tobacco smoke filled the space on the set that was not filled by ideas, beards, corduroy jackets, thick horn-rimmed glasses.

The first and most important stage of

La Clave

was broadcast between 1976 and 1985. Time passes inexorably.

Since 2011 you can't smoke on TV, a behavior that would now be outrageous.

For many years, debates have changed to the rhythm of society (and vice versa), and talk shows, which are a cheap product to produce and a good audience collector, have taken over all time slots.

You put on the TV and there it is: the talk show.

Perhaps the figurehead of television debate in the 21st century is

laSexta noche

(La Sexta), focused on current political issues.

In its most delirious and pink version, it would be


(Telecinco) in its multiple incarnations (and already turned into a total show), while the most


sports facet would be occupied

by El chiringuito de Jugones


All of them share the characteristic way of debating in our time: the frequent exaltation.

Jorge Javier Vázquez and Belén Esteban, in a program of 'Sálvame'.

In addition to the tone, another fundamental difference between the present gatherings and the past ones are the themes.

Both are topical, but, while the current ones deal with the day, the hour, the minute and even the second, given the contemporary urgency, those of

La clave

they had a more comprehensive view of the concerns of the time.

The big issues: Marxism (when the word was not used as a dart, but as a philosophy), drugs, homosexuality, anarchism, Opus Dei, abortion, migration, etc., many of which continue being controversial.

It started from the particular to reach the universal.

Truman Capote, Bernard-Henri Lévy, Olof Palme, Santiago Carrillo, Severo Ochoa, Antonio Escohotado, Gustavo Bueno, Blas Piñar and Ian Gibson appeared there, whom a Falangist tried to attack after a program dedicated to the figure of José Antonio Primo de Rivera.

aliens and demons

Something curious is that back then they were considered serious topics that are now laughable: Balbín brought up issues such as Satanism (a woman appeared who, supposedly, had been possessed by the devil), witchcraft or aliens, unthinkable topics now outside of rare channels of YouTube or the Iker Jiménez program, where they have gone from being a matter of faith to pure entertainment.

At that time, by the way, the program


, by doctor Jiménez del Oso, also visible on the RTVE website, also caused a sensation: a man who, armed only with deep circles under his eyes, a cavernous voice and a pile of cigarettes, looking to the camera for an hour, he managed to hypnotize the audience by talking about paranormal events: the mystery, yes, but about oratory.

The exalted tone of the most notorious current gatherings, which are often the main source of information for citizens, has to do with a world in which emotion is weighing more than reason.

It doesn't just happen on television, but also in debates in parliaments or, very notably, on social networks (especially in the mud of Twitter).

The media, politics, social networks and reality feed off each other, TV is a mirror of the world, but the world is a mirror of TV, and this results in greater polarization and in the so-called

zasca culture

: the debate belligerent in which the sharp and offensive reply is sought.

The outburst.

The idiosyncratic talk show host of our time (not all) is a controversial figure, accused of propagating Cainism and practicing


, that is, the demonic science of giving an opinion on everything without knowing almost anything.

In the most exalted social gatherings, fallacies flourish (that of the straw man, who deforms and ridicules the adversary, hindering mutual understanding, or the

ad hominem

argument , which consists in disqualifying, not the idea, but the one who emits it) and On many occasions, voices are raised and dialectical melés are formed in which it is difficult to make something clear.

Many of the contenders become stars, almost pop icons, see the case of the particular couple formed by Eduardo Inda and Francisco Marhuenda, who on Saturdays, at sunset, liven up the roost in the halls of Spain.

Recording of the program 'Gen Playz', from RTVE.KIKE PARA

The legacy of the calm and profound spirit of La

Clave is perceived

in some television spots.

One case, in a colorful and youthful version, was the program

Gen Playz

, hosted by Inés Hernand on RTVE, where members of the Z generation, millennials and some representatives of other taller generations debated with a seriousness and depth that would make some of them blush. Your elders.

The program was not renewed by the public entity;

He had received accusations from the media right of promoting "gender ideology" or giving voice to the "radical left".

Another case is

The keys of the s.


, the debate program whose first season was directed by the journalist Javier Ruiz on RTVE.

So much so that, on the occasion of the premiere of the new space, Balbín denounced that the public channel had contacted him to obtain the transfer of the

La Clave

brand , which the veteran journalist had registered.

By refusing to transfer him, the program added the plural and the tagline "of the 21st century", which seemed to the Asturian journalist "a lack of imagination and professional ethics".

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Source: elparis

All news articles on 2022-08-13

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