Archive for December, 2011

A.M. HangOVER: Auld Lang Syne?

December 30, 2011

“Should old acquaintance be forgot, and never brought to mind? Today, American Morning ended its decade-long run without a peep to its peeps. No nod to its original anchor, “just a little sexy” Paula Zahn, its final permanent one, “Chetrylicious” Kiran Chetry, or its other less colorful ones. In fact, holiday guest co-hosts Alina Cho and Deborah Feyerich did not even offer AM‘s loyal viewers a final farewell.

In the final segment today, Alina and Deb were surrounded on the AM divan by CNN nameless faces. As the strains of Auld Lang Syne began to air, Deb declared, “And, before we leave, we want to show appreciation to all those who work behind the scenes here at American Morning. These are the folks who get up in the middle of night when everyone is sleeping to bring you this show, and they do it with a lot of enthusiasm and a lot of energy.”

Chiming in animatedly, Alina asserted, “These are the people who work behind the scene tirelessly day and night to make us look good each and every day. And, we cannot thank you enough because we’re nothing without you guys.” She concluded, “Thank you very much. Happy New Year! We hope you have a great year.”

Subsequently, as the final credits began to run, ironically, producers struck up Auld Lang Syne again. No retrospectives of the show’s past co-hosts nor highlights of the program were shown at all. In fact, no mention was made that the show had ended to AM‘s audience who were not in the know.

What a surprise awaits the unwitting viewer next Monday (January 2). AM and its usual “temporary anchors” Ali Velshi, Christine Romans, and Carol Costello or their fill-ins will be nowhere to be found. Instead, two new CNN shows and their cohosts will be there: I.e., CNN newbies, Zoraida Sambolin and Ashleigh Banfield, will greet the viewers in the 5-7 a.m. ET hours, and AM veteran Soledad O’Brien will visit them anew from 7-9 a.m. ET.

Auld lang syne: forget about it? As AM ended today, unfortunately, CNN did not give its AM audience a chance to remember the good times past nor to bid adieu to their old friends today. Rather, CNN seemed to simply hope that their “hung-over” viewers would be happy to make entirely new morning acquaintances next year. In three short days.

AM: Ali (Velshi) Moves (On)

December 29, 2011

Ali: “My last morning was yesterday.” Today, American Morning‘s “temporary” co-host Ali Velshi left CNN’s moribund morning show–a day early without explanation, seemingly. Yesterday, he announced, “1 more day as your @CNN bookends: anchoring @cnnAM 609aET, then @OutFrontCNN 7/11pET.” When an apparent AM viewer queried, “[H]ow do you plan to mark the last ever @CNNAM tomorrow morning?,” Ali tersely replied, “My last morning was yesterday [Tuesday].

Such an abrupt departure by Ali should not be surprising to the AM audience. Since AM‘s last permanent anchor Kiran Chetry gave her fans a final namaskaar in late July, AM has had three “temporary” co-hosts, Ali, Christine Romans, and Carol Costello. Generally, if any of them were off, their absence was duly noted by the ones present. Lately, the co-anchors do not even do that anymore: In fact, today, guest co-hosts Alina Cho and Deborah Feyerick, seemed almost to forget Ali, Christine, or Carol altogether.

If CNN is not careful, AM‘s audience may forget–to tune in.

Red Eye Alert: Ombudsman Levy Off [Updated]

December 28, 2011

“New Year’s Eve special is Saturday at 12:30 a.m.” NOT! Ironically, on a day that “TV’s Andy Levy” left his usual role as Red Eye ombudsman to fill in for Greg Gutfeld as anchor, he did not catch a manifest mistake in his final segment.

As Levy returned to RE‘s final block this morning, he declared, “Hey, don’t forget our annual New Year’s Eve special airs this Saturday at 12:30 a.m. Eastern and Pacific Time right after Fox News Channel’s ‘All-American New Year’ with Bill Hemmer and Megyn Kelly ringing in 2012 live from Times Square.” Underneath him, compounding the error, an RE chyron blared, “Our New Year’s Eve Special Is Saturday at 12:30 AM ET/PT.” Not quite: if RE follows Bill and Megyn ushering in the New Year, RE will be on Sunday at 12:30 a.m. ET.

Red Eye fans, time to reset your DVR’s.

Update: Early this morning (12/29/11), chronologically-challenged “TV’s Andy Levy” repeated his mistake on RE. Before the “Post-Game Wrap-Up,” Levy said, “Remember, our New Year’s Eve special airs Saturday at 12:30 a.m. Eastern….[i]t’s right after Fox News Channel’s “All-American New Year” with Bill Hemmer and Megyn Kelly ringing in 2012 live from Times Square.” Perhaps, RE‘s addled ombudsman jester can be forgiven for his slackness: today, he Tweeted, “Ugh I’m still writing 2011 on all my checks. (Too soon?)”

Ainsley Sexy: Red, White, and Blue?

December 26, 2011

Visions of holidays past. Yesterday, on Christmas Day, former Fox & Friends Weekend co-host Ainsley Earhardt returned to the F&FW curvy couch to rejoin her quilom co-anchor Dave Briggs and sit with F&FW old-timer Kelly Wright. However, today, the blond beauty came back to reign–albeit somewhat submissively–over both of her former F&FW hubbies, Dave and Clayton Morris. Blasts from the F&FW past!

Yesterday, Ainsley took the helm as she sexily steered the F&FW ship for Dave and Kelly. Adorned in a festive short, sleeveless red dress with a sensual slit in her decolletage, the somewhat subdued South Carolina beautiful belle confidently still attracted Dave’s appreciative eye. And, as for Kelly, who once sat on the curvy couch between F&FW‘s hottest female duo, Alisyn Camerota and Kiran Chetry, Ainz stole his heart with a close dance and a plug of his latest CD. As for her F&FW fans, their ringless goddess seemed to still have it.

But, today, Ainz reigned anew from her F&F throne–this time, the weekday edition–over not only Dave but also her other erstwhile F&FW co-anchor, Clayton Morris. Dressed in a white virginal version of her Christmas red dress, Ainsley appeared quite confident as she argued with her boys Dave and Clayton with alacrity. In fact, she reminded the author of Gretchen Carlson–but a mellifluous one who would not deign to lecture her audience or her co-hosts about the “big picture” or anything else of which they already knew full well.

Ainsley was back in fine form–in red and white. And, in blue? No. But, her male admirers may be if she does not return to them somewhat more oft in the future.

Rick Reichmuth: “Not Bad for a First-Timer”

December 26, 2011

“Bush’s brain”: “[He's] steady…charming…personable…just a fun guy on the set.” FNC contributor Karl Rove gave FNC chief meteorologist Rick Reichmuth a rave review for his debut on the Fox & Friends Weekend curvy couch on Christmas Eve. In Rove’s usual weekly F&FW appearance Saturday with co-hosts Dave Briggs, Juliet Huddy, and Rick, he effusively praised Rick (after zestfully zinging his friend Dave).

When Dave welcomed Rove to the show in its final hour, he said, “We are honored [that] you’d join us on this Christmas Eve, Karl!” Playfully, Rove gibed, “Well, I’m happy to do so. But, I’m a little nervous if you’re the senior guy there.” As his co-hosts Rick and Juliet laughed heartily, a “wounded” Dave declared, “In the Christmas spirit, you had to slam me”: Then, pointing to Rick, Dave queried, “Well, Rick’s doing a great job: Right, Karl?”

Smiling, Rove responded, “He is!…Not bad for a first-timer….We knew he was steady under difficult conditions when he handled the weather. But…he’s been charming; he’s been personable; [and] he’s been…just a fun guy on the set this morning. He’s been great!”

And, Rick had. Not only had he fulfilled his co-host duties ably during the prior three hours, but also he had shown a remarkable sensitivity in his interviews with an awkward eight-year-old “One Boy USO,” a tearful “Layaway Secret Santa” recipient, and a grateful “Operation Ride Home” U.S. serviceman and his appreciative family. At least, on Christmas Eve, Rove was right.

Job well done, Rick.

*Fox & Friends Weekend – 12/24/11 (@ 9:04 a.m. ET)

“Big News”: Rick Debuts on Curvy Couch

December 23, 2011

FNC chief meteorologist Rick Reichmuth proudly trumpeted his first appearance on Fox & Friends Weekend tomorrow as a guest co-host. After fellow fill-in co-anchor Juliet Huddy disclosed to her Twitter followers that Rick would be “on [F&F's] curvy [couch],” Rick exulted, “Big news for tomorrow’s Fox and Friends…Get ready….I am filling in on the curvy couch for Clayton [Morris]!” Elaborating, Rick remarked, “I’ll be doing weather, too.” Apparently, trying to allay any fears of his fans, and, perhaps, any lingering ones of his own, he hopefully declared, “With @foxdavebriggs and @juliethuddy, they’ll take good care of me.”

Congratulations on your overdue debut, Rick. Good luck!

F&F Holiday: Gretch Away

December 23, 2011

Christmas cheer: Aly & Juliet appear. Fox & Friends co-host Gretchen Carlson took off early for her holiday vacation. But, true-blue fill-in co-anchors, Alisyn Camerota and Juliet Huddy, more than took up the slack this Thursday and Friday, respectively. Unlike the former Miss America who demands the attention of her co-anchors, Brian Kilmeade and Steve Doocy, and the F&F fans, these FNC reigning beauties more than earned it.

What a delight: Aly and Juliet were as usual–smart, sexy, and scintillating.  But, for the author who still can not quite grasp how Gretchen gained E.D. Hill‘s long-held throne over her seemingly more socially adept, less solipsist rivals, Aly and Juliet (not to mention former FNC rising star, Kiran Chetry), their appearances were a bit bittersweet. And, if Brian and Steve’s less contrived conversations and more relaxed demeanor were any indication, they appeared to concur–happy for the moment for the “new” spirits and their Christmas cheer.

F&F holidays: Skal!

Christine: Ali’s Delicate!

December 18, 2011

Rob: “He’s a delicate challenge….I’ve known that for a while!” American Morning co-anchor Ali Velshi got a much deserved flaying Wednesday for his brief two-day return to the show last week. After jetting around the world for weeks for some fun and purportedly business, Ali came back to help helm AM Monday and Tuesday: Then, he was off for the rest of the week to the amusement of his co-hosts, Christine Romans and Carol Costello, and CNN meteorologist Rob Marciano.

As Rob’s 6:20 a.m. ET weather report came to an end, he tossed back to the two present AM co-hosts, Christine and Carol. Jesting, Rob sniped, “What! Does Ali come back for one [sic] day and then he flies the coop?” Shaking her head, a smiling Christine replied, “He’s delicate! He’s a delicate, what, he’s a delicate, you know, I mean.” Feeling in the blanks, Rob laughed, “He’s a delicate challenge. Yes, I’ve known that for a while!”

Looking down at her desk, arching her eyebrows, and nodding her head in agreement, a more reticent Carol chuckled, “I don’t even know how to respond to that.”

A fun AM moment. Rob, just what the AM doctor should have ordered? Too bad, CNN chief Ken Jautz never gave you a trial run with Kiran Chetry before he axed the show.

American Morning – 12/14/11 (@ 6:22 a.m. ET)


AM’s Christine Romans: “Our Chris Knowles”

December 18, 2011

American Morning co-anchor Christine Romans appears to have adopted her former co-host Kiran Chetry‘s hubby, meteorologist Chris Knowlesat least, on air. As Kiran’s bad boy made yet another appearance (in three of six AM shows from 12/07-14/11) sans wedding ring or a reference to his better half, Christine introduced him, saying, “Our Chris Knowles.”* Whether she was simply embracing Chris personally or signally a new working relationship was not immediately clear.

However, it would be rather ironic if Chris has signed on to the moribund AM in its final hour. After all, less than five months ago, his Nepalese beauty signed off the show as she bid her fervid fans a tearful namaskaar with a pledge to “see ya soon.” Perchance, Chris is trying to convince his wifey’s fans to stay tuned in the interim.

If so, welcome aboard, Chris!

[Author's aside: "Our Chris Knowles." Christine, almost exactly a year ago, another AM co-host enigmatically uttered those very same words. AM's erstwhile Aphrodite herself.]

*American Morning – 12/14/11 (@ 6:16 a.m. ET)

Wallace Repentant? “Happy” if Paul Wins

December 15, 2011

Bushie no more? Fox News Sunday anchor Chris Wallace seemed to distance himself from his GOP establishment colleagues, e.g., Karl Rove, Dana Perino, etc. today. After pontificating yesterday on FNC’s “Your World with Neil Cavuto” that a Ron Paul victory would “discredit the Iowa caucuses,” Wallace chose a decidedly different tack this morning when Happening Now co-host Jon Scott asked him what a Paul win would mean in Iowa. With his sails more neatly trimmed, Wallace responded, “I don’t mean in any way to denigrate Ron Paul….I fully understand why his…millions of supporters across the country but thousands here in Iowa are so supportive of him.”*

Elaborating, he continued, “But, I think it is fair to say [that] he is a long shot for the Republican nomination. And, to the degree that people look at these States and say, ‘Are they picking a President?,” if they were to pick Paul, I think a lot of the–and, maybe, we’re not so smart–but a lot of the smart guys in the media and in the Republican party would say, ‘Well, that’s kind of an aberration.” Apparently, repentant, he added, “Now, it may be that Ron Paul proves us wrong, and I’d be happy if he did because it would be a very exciting race.”

Chris Wallace: fair and balanced? Trying.

*Happening Now – 12/15/11 (@ 12:11 a.m. ET)

T. J. Holmes: I Could Have Stayed On with CNN

December 12, 2011

“This wasn’t about me looking for a job.” CNN Newsroom weekend anchor T. J. Holmes seemed rather eager to let his fans know that he was not ushered out of the exit door by the CNN suits. In fact, in an interview with The Root, he asserted, “I could have have stayed on with CNN: This wasn’t about me looking for a job. I chose BET for a reason, for the opportunity that I did not have at CNN just because [they have] a different type of audience.”

As T. J. (or Telious, Jr.) prepared to leave his CNN post in a few weeks for his new “multi-platform deal” with BET, his good friend former CNN biz beauty Stephanie Elam fondly reminisced about their shared past. Responding to a Twitter follower who bemoaned the departure of herself, T. J., and their whilom AM friend Kiran Chetry (and CNN colleagues Betty Nguyen and Tony Harris), Stephanie Tweeted, “It does feel a bit like the end of an era!” Chiming in, Kiran aptly remarked, “We’ll always have the memories!”

Regardless of the reason for the “end of an era,” thanks for those AM memories, T. J., Stephanie, and Kiran!

Juliet: “It’s a Kitchen Cousins Sandwich!”

December 8, 2011

Huddy happy in the middle–again: “I’m a giver! I’m a giver!” Sexy Fox & Friends guest co-host Juliet Huddy just “can’t help it“: The carnal cougar seems to relish being in the center of a manwich. Less than four months ago, Juliet celebrated being in a “Philly sandwich” between fellow F&FW co-hosts Clayton Morris and Mike Jerrick: Yesterday, she relished being the treat in a “Kitchen Cousins sandwich” between beefcake kin Anthony Carrino and John Colaneri.

In a pre-break promo for the upcoming Kitchen Cousins segment almost mid-show, Juliet stood between the two cousins in the F&FW kitchen.* As the camera panned in on the three, Juliet coaxed the boys to get closer to her, saying, “Come get in here! So handsome, you guys.” As she fanned her flushing face with her hand, Juliet eyed each cousin suggestively, purring, “It’s a Kitchen Cousins sandwich!” As she laughed wickedly, a chagrined Colaneri blushed and goatish Carrino replied, “Oh, boy!”

Later, when F&F co-anchor Steve Doocy began the interview with the two cousins, an off-camera Juliet yelled, “Hoooo!”** As the boys smiled, Steve turned around toward his randy co-host, instructing, “Stop hooting over there, Juliet.” Subsequently, after querying them about their HGTV show and whether they were looking for more kitchens to redo, Steve jested, “And, Juliet said you’re also looking for girls.”

When the abashed Kitchen Cousin guys reddened, producers went to a split screen of them and Juliet. In response, Colaneri stammered, “I guess, I, are, you [Juliet], you just exploded something,” as Carrino chuckled, “Thank you, Juliet.” Pointing back to the boys, a smiling Juliet proclaimed, “I’m a giver! I’m a giver!”

Arching his eyebrows, Steve looked back at Juliet, exclaiming, “What!” Embarrassed, Juliet stuttered, “I didn’t mean it like that. I mean, you know, I’m just, jus [sic] saying, you know.” As Carrino howled and clapped his hands with glee, Juliet insisted, “I’m just giving, giving the information.”

Jaunty Juliet: Just giving.

*Fox & Friends – 12/07/11 (@ 7:41 a.m. ET)

**Ibid at 7:52 a.m. ET.

T. J. Holmes: BET Bound

December 7, 2011

“Simply ecstatic.” CNN Newsroom weekend host Loutelious Ann “T. J.” Holmes indeed had “another gig lined up” before he bid his CNN colleagues adieu, apparently. According to Deadline Hollywood, CNN’s ebony Adonis has inked a “multi-platform” deal with BET Networks: I.e., T. J. will anchor a new television program for BET and “contribute” to its website.

In a BET.com report, Music Programming and Specials Prez Stephen G. Hill declared, “We are simply ecstatic to have T. J. Holmes coming to our fold. He’s been an outstanding news anchor and we look forward to working with him in a variety of ways on BET.” Perhaps, waxing a whit hyperbolic about his prized new catch, Hill elaborated, “It’s now upon us to develop vehicles that capture his intelligence, curiosity about the world, warmth, humor, and compassion. It’s a challenge that we are happy to have.”

T.J, you and your better half should be proud. Congratulations!

H/t J$P.

AM: Kiran’s Bad Boy Back [Updated]

December 7, 2011

Sans wedding ring. Today, former American Morning co-host Kiran Chetry‘s hubby Chris Knowles appeared twice on the CNN morning news show today–without his connubial band and with nary a word of his beloved beauty.* Sitting in the very seat of his “wifey” in his first appearance on the AM divan (i.e., screen right of both AM  co-hosts Christine Romans and Carol Costello), Chris ably reported on an OWS protester who had crossed over to “the enemy” and procured a job with a Wall Street financial firm. However, the viewer could be forgiven if s/he were somewhat distracted during Chris’ story: As he conversed with Kiran’s former CNN colleagues, Chris made no mention of his lovely lady, AM‘s erstwhile Aphrodite, and his ring finger seemed brazenly bare.

Fogiveable forgetfulness or playful payback? If the latter, not nice, Chris. Remember, Kiran was just “kidding.”

*American Morning – 12/07/11 (@ 6:46 a.m. ET and 8:58 a.m. ET)

Update: Unfortunately, Chris “forgot” to wear his wedding band yet again the very next day (Thursday) in his two AM appearances.**  Still forgiveable? Only Nepal’s delectable devi can decide.

** American Morning – 12/08/11 (6:16 a.m. ET and 8:32 a.m. ET)

T.J. Holmes Leaves CNN

December 6, 2011

To join Kiran Chetry? CNN Newsroom weekend anchor T. J. Holmes revealed that he is departing CNN at the end of the year according to Richard Prince. TVNewser confirmed the news with CNN programming director Janelle Rodriguez and further reported that T. J. “already has another gig lined up.”

Hm. Is CNN’s ebony Adonis following in the footsteps of American Morning’s Aphrodite, i.e., T. J.’s friend and former AM co-host Kiran Chetry? Less than five months ago (end of July), Kiran left CNN for a  yet to-be-announced “very special opportunity” and just last month she assured her followers that she would be back on TV “very soon.” Perhaps, even though CNN honcho Ken Jautz’s test AM iteration of T. J. and Kiran did not quite work out this year, the two may plan to reunite in early 2012 in another television venture elsewhere.

Regardless, CNN viewers will miss the genuinely charming Southern gentleman with a quick wit, a ready smile, and a personable touch. For T. J.’s American Morning fans (who are likewise bereft of the captivating Kiran), at least, his ivory twin Rob Marciano remains for now as the moribund AM comes to an end next year.

T. J., thanks for the CNN memories. Hopefully, your fans will see you again soon on the air. If with Kiran, all the better!

FNC’s Liz Trotta DISSES The Donald

December 4, 2011

“Vulgarian…celebrity journalist…lounge lizard.” Ouch! Fox News contributor Liz Trotta minced no words in her weekly America’s News HQ commentary about the prospect of real estate mogul Donald Trump’s moderating the GOP Presidential debate on December 27 in Iowa.* Instead of the almost worshipful tone usually adopted by FNC’s Fox & Friends co-hosts for The Donald during his own weekly appearances, Trotta employed a more iconoclastic attitude as she joyfully bashed the Celebrity Apprentice star.

When ANHQ co-host Eric Shawn introduced Trotta’s segment (about media reaction to the debate and candidate participation in it), he sardonically remarked, “So, from the venerable Howard K. Smith moderating the Kennedy-Nixon debate to The Donald.”

Chuckling in concurrence, Trotta first opined that the media were afraid of Trump or of losing access to him: Sneering, she added, “The man really is a vulgarian and really traipses in where he shouldn’t be such as Presidential debates.” Approvingly, she then noted GOP candidate Ron Paul had declined Trump’s invitation and quoted his issued statement which read, “The selection of a reality television personality to host a presidential debate that voters nationwide will be watching is beneath the office of the Presidency and flies in the face of that office’s history and dignity.” With less favor, she subsequently cited Republican frontrunner Newt Gingrich’s “whole-hearted” acceptance of Trump’s invitation and his assertion that he “loves entertainment,” Disdainfully, she declared, “Well, thank you, Newt, because that’s exactly what it’s going to be: It’s certainly not gonna have anything to do with journalism. I mean, Donald Trump as journalist or, we should say, as celebrity journalist.” When concluding her report, she snidely noted that Trump has a new book out and that he seems to surface whenever he does.

Smiling, Shawn sarcastically responded, “‘Seems to surface,’ I don’t think he ever goes away. But he does say, Mr. Trump in his defense says [that] he will talking about important issues…[that] it will be a serious debate and…[that] he gets high ratings.”

Dismissively, Trotta declared, “Well, I don’t know about the ratings but…he keeps just repeating the same thing: I’m sure [that] we’re gonna here the same old line about China and all his…sorta truck-driver tough remarks.” Scornfully, she snarked, “I mean, here is this lounge lizard trying to sound like a working man: It really is quite laughable….But, it will be entertainment.”

After Trotta tossed back to Shawn, he duly laughed, “Alright, vulgarian, lounge lizard, Liz, when you go home, stay away from Trump Tower. Okay? You don’t know what could come off the terraces.”

Other than the boiling oil.

*America’s News HQ – 12/4/11 (@ 11:56 a.m. ET)


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