MADE FOR TV by Richard Breen


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Talky, gruesome psycho-melodrama--as a TV-obsessed weirdo first makes videotapes of people being murdered, then switches to live, on-the-air terrorism. The unconvincingly portrayed killer: Miami's Gavin Risen, a 40-ish crazy who had a rotten childhood, was exposed to nonstop TV (because of a leg injury), killed his mother, and now--after failing to get work as a TV cameraman--is taking revenge on the world, TV-style. He tricks people into being interviewed before a TV camera, you see, shoots them dead raid-interview, and then mails the macabre videotapes to a local news-station . . . which reluctantly puts them on the air. (Long, tedious debates about violence-on-TV ensue.) But eventually, however, after Gavin experiences an interminable psycho-mind-trip through TV-history, he goes one step further: he invades the local TV station, takes the newscaster hostage, demands network coverage, and finally commandeers a plane to take him to New York--where he'll make a helicopter assault on the TV station that first rejected him. ""He was the first person to bring it all together, to make his life and death an adventure for all mankind, to become writer, director, performer, spectator, victim, and executioner simultaneously in front of the eyes of the entire world."" Despite the faint resemblance to a recent, real-life incident: implausible, heavyhanded, character-less suspense--with some serious issues given chatty, banal treatment.

Pub Date: Nov. 9th, 1982
Publisher: Beaufort--dist. by Scribners