Woodruff Documentary Marred by Inappropriate Commercial

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If you saw the ABC News documentary To Iraq and Back: Bob Woodruff Reports Tuesday night, you know it was hard not to cry hearing Woodruff and his wife describe what happened to him after a bomb exploded near an Iraqi Army vehicle he was traveling in on Jan 29, 2006.

He's lucky to be alive, and as the last half-hour of the show proved, he's probably much luckier than the many soldiers similarly injured. The documentary pointed out that there are far more brain injuries occurring there than the public has been told about. This was a well-done, sensitive news hour. ABC should be commended, as my colleague John Eggerton notes in a blog below.

However, now that television is about 60 years old, give or take, is it still impossible for networks' news and programming departments to find a way to coordinate things with their ad departments? In the very first pod of commercials for this documentary was one for a product that helps limit incontinence. It featured a woman wearing a large sandwich board sign reading, "I have a bladder control problem" in giant letters. It was jarring to see a commercial that inappropriate placed into a program like this. 

Couldn't someone at ABC have decided this sponsor–or at least this commercial‑-was  way out of place?

By P.J. Bednarski

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