Ark Galactapedia

Showdown! is a SSN/CAtv Human current events debate program that first began airing in 2521. In each episode, two guests of opposing views are brought on to debate key issues of the day. Showdown! has been canceled and revived multiple times. The most recent version has continuously broadcast since 2799 and is hosted by Eria Quint.

CURRENT FORMAT

The host of Showdown! opens every episode with a summary of the debate topic at hand, usually a current events news story. The host then introduces guests of opposing viewpoints to present their takes on the issue and debate it with one another. Generally, two guests are present, but sometimes the host will conduct a one-on-one interview or allow three or more guests to debate with one another. As the debate progresses, the host serves as moderator, asking questions as needed. Between one and five topics are covered per episode.

HISTORY

The concept for Showdown! began in 2511, on Angeli (Croshaw II). Local politicians in Quinton would join radio news anchor Upasna Dixit to debate upcoming legislation. After nine years on the air, Dixit was approached by the now defunct news network Angeli On Air (AoA) to adapt Showdown! as a 30-minute current events debate program. Dixit signed for an undisclosed amount and began production on the new show. The first episode aired throughout Croshaw on 9 September 2521 in a late-night time slot.

Showdown! soon became popular and was shuffled to a more popular time slot. It saw high enough ratings that in 2522, SSN/CAtv bought the rights from AoA and broadcast it for the first time to an interplanetary audience that same year. In 2523, they launched a special series of episodes where various political experts, authors, and laypeople debated the merits and drawbacks of the new United Planets of Earth government without Dixit's moderation. However, the lack of an arbiter caused conversations to go off track, leading to a drop in the show's ratings. Ratings rose again when Dixit returned in 2524.

During Dixit's run as host, Showdown! covered such issues as first contact with the Xi’an (2530), The outbreak of the First Tevarin War (2542 - 2546), and the ascension of Ivar Messer to the newly created office of Prime Citizen (2546). Dixit chose to retire after Ivar Messer created the position of Imperator, stating that she preferred not to lead debates on pros and cons of fascism.

The new host, Inácio Santos Melo, developed a confrontational moderation style in contrast to Dixit's cool and impartial one, often aligning himself against his guests in heated three-way debates. Melo was criticized by other news networks for this behavior, but Showdown! experienced an upswing in popularity. This tone became the program's norm even after Melo's retirement in 2588.

Showdown! has been canceled and rebooted multiple times. It ran uninterrupted from 2547 to 2619. On 09 May 2619, Showdown! was canceled due to a dip in ratings. It was revived from 2648 to 2662, canceled again due to a contract dispute, and then brought back to fill an empty late-night slot from 2687 to 2697. It was one of many news programs to be censored into cancellation during the power struggle between Astrid Messer VII and Samuel Messer VIII (2697 - 2701), and wasn't revived again until 2718, three years after the ascension of Galor Messer IX. This version of Showdown! lasted until 2789, when it was censored again by the Messer government, this time for inviting SenatorTerrence Akari of Terra (Terra III) as a guest. It was revived for the fifth time in 2799 in the run-up to the ratification of the Fair Chance Act.

Since 2799, Showdown! has been shuffled between time slots, but has not seen another cancellation. The current host, Eria Quint, took over in 2935.

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