Big Chuck’s Retirement

Now, that’s timing.

Just a day after an exclusive OMW item about WJW FOX 8’s non-renewal of the contracts for station icons “Big Chuck” Schodowski and “Lil’ John” Rinaldi, OMW feels it’s been spinned by the Plain Dealer and the local FOX O&O.

PD TV/radio columnist Julie Washington, covering a local TV item a couple of days earlier than normal, says Schodowski is “thinking about retiring” from the “Big Chuck and Lil’ John Show”. And naturally, with Big Chuck hanging it up, Rinaldi agrees that the show won’t continue in another iteration.

The article does bring up a good point. We’d forgotten that Chuck was 72 years old. He’s been doing late night local TV for 43 years, starting off as a staffer on Ernie Anderson’s signature late night horror flick/comedy show “Ghoulardi”.

Schodowski, we assume, would consider it a compliment that we can’t see him as being over 70.

But make no mistake. Our information from yesterday’s item is solid, and FOX has been pushing pretty much since they took over WJW for the local suits to show BC&LJ the door.

Even Big Chuck himself, ever graceful and taking the heat for this, hints at it in the PD story. “It used to be an established, unmovable thing. Now we get kicked around,” he tells Washington.

But he’s not at all complaining about FOX, or even how they sometimes don’t have a clue as to what kind of movies the local pair should wrap their show around.

On his way out the door, “Big Chuck” is showing more class than a roomful of FOX executives…

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