Sunday, May 19, 2024

Mario Batali Sex Scandal Makes ABC Spit Out “The Chew” for More “GMA”– “General Hospital” in Trouble


ABC has cancelled “The Chew” after seven years. Don’t think this isn’t related to the scandals surrounding famed chef Mario Battali, who was just accused again in The New York Times of rape and sexual misconduct. Battali was one of the co-hosts of “The Chew” until news of his troubles popped up last winter. A “60 Minutes” piece this past Sunday caused Battali’s company to cut ties with him.

The whole thing has a left bad taste in the mouth of ABC.

So the network will yank “The Chew” and replace it with “Good Afternoon America,” an hour of news and entertainment cut off from “GMA” by four hours. (They can’t take the intervening time– it’s local or syndicated. Plus powerhouse “Live with Kelly and Ryan” at 9am is owned by ABC cousin Disney.)

But this is a warning to “General Hospital” fans. The show is in ratings decline. If ABC can make “GMA” work at 1pm, it will come for the soap’s time in many markets at 2pm. The news this past week that “GH” had fallen to fourth place out of four soaps on the air doesn’t help. It’s time to get “GH” into the emergency room or face the Grim Reaper. ABC would like nothing to better than to get rid of a high priced dramatic program and replace it with cheap, recycled stories from the morning “GMA.”

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.

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