After the Thanksgiving reunion special starring Ron Funches and the 2005 era of G4 hosts (the hosts that everyone knows and love), we got many things such as what Around the Net would look like in 2020, Drunk Link, and most importantly, WWE’s Xavier Woods as an official member of the new era of G4 starting this year. So, with eyes on the future of G4 let’s go back to the old days of 2002 when the network was in this edition of Celebrating G4 focusing on the videogame news show, Pulse, what it was, who hosted it, and what mark it left on the network after its cancellation.
What Was It?
Pulse was a news show dedicated to interactive entertainment in a very traditional format seen at the time on other networks. The show looked very professional and well-produced when compared to other G4 shows at the time and well after the show ended. Like any news show, Pulse had interview segments with people in the video game industry from developers, to gamers, to content creators at the time who were using games to make content (Burnie Burns and Geoff Ramsey of Red vs Blue fame for example).
There was also the EB Games Top Ten which as the name implies, was the ten best-selling games for say a console, multi-platform, or a different subject. As with many other shows on the network the show had previews of upcoming games such as Midtown Madness 3. I didn’t know this when the show was on the air, but they had a story on Pulse about EVO 2004 which shocked me as I had no idea EVO went as far back as 2004. There was even a segment devoted to the BBS (Bulletin Board System) used in the early days of message boards on the internet.
When the show first debuted along with the channel in 2002 the initial hosts were Patrick Clark and Ronilyn Reilly. Jim Downs who was a behind-the-scenes part of G4 would fill-in for whoever was out that week and would be a correspondent for the show.
Reilly would leave the show in 2004 in order to move onto “other projects” which left a vacancy in the hosting position that would be temporarily filled by “Captain Immy” himself, Kevin Pereira until Amanda Mackay would be hired to be the permanent replacement for Reilly in the Spring of 2004.
So, a bit of background, when Paul Allen sold TechTV to Comcast in May of 2004, Comcast basically wanted the 43 million homes that TechTV was broadcasted in while at the time of the sale, G4 was in 13 million. Nine months later G4 was in 50 million homes, however, this came at a great cost as shows were canceled, hosts were laid off, and production staff was let go. Shows canceled were, just to name some: TechTV’s Unscrewed with Martin Sargent, Pulse, and Players. Patrick Clark and Amanda Mackay were laid off as well. Kevin Pereira would move onto The Screen Savers and eventually Attack of the Show, along with Jim Downs. (Read more on G4’s true plan with the TechTV purchase here) Below is Leo Laporte talking about the layoffs and his prediction of G4 going under which only took close to a decade.
What Part of Pulse Lived On?
Following Pulse’s cancellation elements of Pulse, (mainly the news stories) would make their way onto The Screen Savers/Attack of the Show and X-Play in the form of The Feed on Attack and on X-Play as the Gaming Update. The latter going away in the form of “The Feed: Gaming Edition”.
What Happened to The Hosts?
Patrick Clark would go on to host “Offbeat America” for HGTV in 2005 and now is a part of KPLR 11 in St. Louis, MO. I was unable to find anything recent regarding Ronilyn Reilly but just browsing through Twitter, you can tell that the G4 fanbase very much loved her. Amanda Mackay would go on to link up with Geoff Keighley for both Game Head and GameTrailersTV from 2005-2013. Kevin Pereira would go on to host The Screen Savers and Attack of the Show and essentially become one of the faces of the network along with Morgan Webb and Adam Sessler of X-Play before leaving in 2012. Unfortunately, things are going to get a bit somber as Jim Downs would leave G4 in 2007 and passed away in 2016.
Do you remember watching Pulse? If so, make some noise in the comments below!
That’s it for this edition of Celebrating G4 on Pulse. Next time I will be talking about the G4 show dedicated to sports: Sweat.
For the previous Celebrating G4 focusing on Game On click here.