The Halo Effect: “If we see a person first in a good light, it is difficult subsequently to darken that light”
In David Hepworth’s book on 1971, he uses the Halo Effect to explain why “What’s Going On” has such a reputation for being a great album (basically, the excellence of the opening and closing tracks casts a halo over the rest of the album).
That got me thinking about where else this effect can be seen. Oddly enough, the first name that came to mind was David Letterman. When he retired a couple of years back, tributes poured in about his 30 years as a talk show host. Yet most of the clips that were recalled were from the 1980s. As someone who only saw his show from the late 90s onwards it was difficult to see what the fuss was about: a fairly cranky middle-aged guy making jokes with his bandleader? I think a lot of the goodwill that was extended to him was a result of the Halo Effect created by his early 80s shows, when he really was a breath of fresh air.
In sports, few teams benefit from the Halo Effect as much as » Continue Reading.