20/20 is an American television newsmagazine broadcast on ABC since June 6, 1978. Created by ABC News executive Roone Arledge, the show was designed similarly to CBS's 60 Minutes but focuses more on human interest stories than international and political subjects. The program's name derives from the "20/20" measurement of visual acuity.
The show's anchors on the premiere telecast were Harold Hayes, the renowned editor of Esquire magazine who also served as senior producer, and famed Time art critic Robert Hughes. The debut received largely harsh reviews; The New York Times described it as "dizzingly absurd" and the Washington Post denounced it as "the trashiest stab at candycane journalism yet." In his autobiography Roone: A Memoir, Arledge recalled that probably the most embarrassing part of that initial program was the Claymation segments featuring cariactures representing then-President Jimmy Carter (singing "Georgia on My Mind") and Walter Cronkite (closing the show intoning, "That's the way it was"). As a result of the scathing reviews, serious and drastic changes were made immediately: Hayes and Hughes were fired (as was original executive producer Bob Shanks), and a then semi-retired Hugh Downs was recruited to take on the role of sole host on the following week's program.