A few days ago, the producers of Live With Kelly tried to make a big deal out of the upcoming announcement of Kelly Ripa’s permanent co-host. Their plan was to have Ripa host the show by herself on September 3, then roll out their selection in a big surprise event the following day. I found this to be hilarious at the time, because that meant they’d have to try to keep the secret for two full weeks, which is all but impossible in today’s rapid-fire information age. We found out who Mitt Romney was selecting as his running mate before he announced it, and he had millions of dollars and the Secret Service at his disposal. A coffee and chit-chat talk show didn’t stand a chance.
So, anyway, of course the decision leaked out in like three hours. And the winner IS … uh, Michael Strahan?
Now an executive familiar with the show’s plans confirms Philbin’s replacement is Strahan, a star of short-lived Fox sitcom Brothers. The news was first reported by Broadcasting & Cable.
Strahan was one of 59 co-hosts Disney ABC Television Group has tried out over the past several months, some as larks (Neil Patrick Harris) and others as serious candidates, including Saturday Night Live’s Seth Meyers, said to have been a finalist despite his denials that he wanted the job. [USA Today]
I suppose this is where I should tell you that I watch Live With Kelly. A LOT. It’s part of a morning routine that also includes The Price Is Right and reruns of Fresh Prince (working from home is weird), so I’ve seen her cycle through a ton of guest co-hosts during their search. It’s tough to find the right chemistry in an abbreviated tryout, and some were better than others — Seth Meyers and Anderson Cooper were probably the best, while Joel McHale’s dry sarcastic vibe didn’t seem to mesh too well with the chipper, caffeinated style of the show — but I will say that Strahan wasn’t one of my favorites. I don’t have anything against him (this is a lie. He was a New York Giant and I hate him), and it wasn’t anything in particular that bothered me, I just wasn’t a big fan. I imagine I’ll still watch because it’s a habit and I’m kind of a captive audience at 9 a.m., but I think they could have made a better selection.
But mostly I’m just upset that I wasn’t even, like, considered for the job. I drink coffee and have opinions every day. I WOULD HAVE BEEN PERFECT.