On Thursday, ESPN revealed their plans for Debatable, the show that will essentially serve as the successor to Highly Questionable, which was cancelled this month.

The digital-only show, available on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and the ESPN app, will run between 45 and 60 minutes each weekday and covers “the most compelling topics from around the sports world with even greater depth and digression.” It premieres on Monday, October 4th.

“Debatable will launch 20 years to the month after the premiere of ESPN’s marquee afternoon studio show Pardon the Interruption – a show that expanded what was possible for a sports studio show,” said Mike Foss, ESPN vice president, digital production. “We’re excited to continue to try and push those boundaries further on Debatable with a daily, digital-exclusive approach reaching fans where they are and even more unique virtual production elements that will create engaging and fun conversations that resonate in new ways across platforms.”

Involved personalities have yet to be announced (ESPN’s release mentioned “a rotating team of signature voices”), though I’m sure most of the usual crew from HQ will be involved (aside from Katie Nolan, who announced her departure from ESPN this week).

Given the description of Debatable, it sure sounds a lot like High Noon, the Bomani Jones/Pablo Torre high concept show that had its runtime slash and start time shifted after just two months on the air. It was eventually cancelled in early 2020.

Maybe in a digital format, a show like this has a better chance of succeeding and reaching its targeted audience. Here’s hoping Debatable ends up being far less formulaic than many of the debate and discussion shows on the air today.


About Joe Lucia

I hate your favorite team. I also sort of hate most of my favorite teams.