Producers approached Kraddick after Dish Nation, which will air in DFW on KDFW/Channel 4, tested successfully in other markets last summer. "They were excited about the ratings that it got, and they felt like they had a winner," Kraddick says. "We were able to see a couple of full episodes, but they made it really clear that they were just kind of testing the concept."
Kraddick's show was added to the lineup when the show expanded and revamped for a full run. The fast-paced show also features The Rickey Smiley Morning Show, as well as shows from Los Angeles, Detroit and New York doing approximately 45-second riffs about the day's entertainment events.
"I really like the concept," Kraddick says. "I think it makes a lot of sense, because there are so many [TV] shows that do gossip in an antiseptic way, and I really have seen anybody try to add the dynamic on television of not reporting the stories, but commenting on the stories. Chelsea Handler does this in a round table every night that's very popular, but you've got morning [radio] shows across the country where gossip has become a big part of their concept every morning. And it's not because of reporting that the audience is engaged; it's the comments that follow."
Although it will feature morning-radio shows, Dish Nation will air at night because the show can't turn all its content around quickly enough to be a daytime series. But Kraddick says he doesn't worry about any loss of immediacy.
"It's not dependent on the story itself, it's dependent on the personalities that are on the shows, and all the kinship that they have," Kraddick says. "Take Politically Incorrect and take out the politics, and add gossip, and that's what you have."
When this interview took place, Dish Nation had yet to have cameras in Kraddick's studio. But his show has been doing KiddTV online for three years, and the cast has long since adapted to being filmed.
"The way they're doing it is pretty noninvasive," Kraddick says. "They'll just suggest to us, 'Here's the stories that we think we'll be using on the show tonight. Get to as many of 'em as you can, and if that makes sense for you, use 'em.' And they'll be filming us as we do the show live and taking excerpts from the show."
Although Kraddick is based in DFW, where his show airs on KHKS/106.1 "KISS-FM," he has long been syndicated nationwide. So he won't be limited to talking about things related to celebrities from North Texas (although there's certainly enough fodder there). "They're not looking for 'We want the Pittsburgh take on Lindsey Lohan," he says. "They're just trying to assemble [bits from] what they think will be the funniest shows that talk about celebrity gossip, and let them talk."
"It's going to be really, really an adventure," Kraddick says. "There's going to be growing pains, but we'll figure it out. I've never liked myself on TV at all, but I've got a lot of good-looking people around me, and hopefully people will look at them."
Dish Nation will air at 11:30 p.m. weeknights on KDFW/Channel 4, beginning Sept. 10.