Monday, June 17, 2024

War Continues at “Kelly and Michael”: Show Returns with Scripted Opening, Avoiding Elephant on the Set


“Live with Kelly and Michael” opened this morning with the most boring opening chat in history. Scripted heavily and ripped from today’s other headlines, the opening was like a laundry list of things no one cares about. It was just a way to talk around the elephant in the room while the elephant was using its trunk to upend the furniture.

What a mess: Kelly Ripa has now been on the show since 2001– that’s fifteen years. And no one at ABC respected her enough to consult her on Michael Strahan moving to “GMA.” Same for executive producer Michael Gelman. They were left in the dark, and feel– with good reason– that they were ambushed.

“GMA” cannot expand to three hours, by the way. The 9am hour on ABC is syndicated and doesn’t belong to the network. It makes too much money for everyone– and that includes ABC, which owns Disney, which is the syndicator. So bringing Strahan to “GMA” is not a gambit to expand their show.

This is a lot like when Joan Rivers left Johnny Carson for Fox without telling him first, in 1986. Johnny never spoke to Joan again. Kelly might never speak to Michael again, except that by next week they’re both supposed to be on stage together again.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

Read more

In Other News