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Thursday, January 05, 2017

NBC is Megyn a big mistake

The biggest media mistake of the year so far (which already is one/seventy-third gone) is NBC hiring Megyn Kelly from Fox News.

Replacing her with Tucker Carlson is brilliant.

I offer her tale as an example of how clubby and out-of-touch the news media is.

Heck, they even got wrong who will replace her.

NBC took the wrong Fox from Fox News. Despite her magazine covers and her hype as a sexy praying mantis who devastates men in interviews, Megyn Kelly is not all that as an interviewer. Consider her vaunted debate question.
KELLY: Mr. Trump, one of the things people love about you is you speak your mind, and you don’t use a politician’s filter. However, that is not without its downsides, in particular, when it comes to women. You’ve called women you don’t like fat pigs, dogs, slobs, and disgusting animals.
TRUMP: Only Rosie O’Donnell.
He turned Kelly's question around in three words.

The audience laughed at her, and she never laid a glove on him for the rest of the night. She became the butt of his joke.  

The only reason anyone remembers the question was a few days later, after the laughter at her expense died down, Trump went on CNN and revived the issue. He used the confrontation to separate himself from Fox News as he tapped into the unease his supporters had with the conservative network.

Trump's opponents seethed at this, but his lead in the polls widened. While the press would portray him as sexist throughout the campaign, no one would confront him like this again because they feared being burned like that.

"Only Rosie O'Donnell."

Who the hell wants to be the one sticking up for Rosie O'Donnell?

Kelly thought her clumsy question helped her street cred. But she lives in Trump Country and her ratings took a hit. Yes, her numbers grew but not as high as Bill O'Reilly's or Sean Hannity's.

Her hour became a ratings hammock.

Fox News may be happy to see her go. I do not know. All I know is I don't watch the show and have not since she went after Trump, cut her hair, and began her yearlong audition for a non-Fox News gig.

She got a prime-time special last May with Trump. It bombed in the ratings. 

Her spin is that she turned down $25 million a year from Fox News to take $15 million a year from Comcast. Who does that?

NBC will give her an hourlong daily daytime show.

It's a rather girly thing to do, isn't it? Katie Couric got one. Meredith Vieira got one. Anderson Cooper got one. They never make macho male anchors do these things.

These shows last about two seasons before the new guy takes over daytime TV, and realizes he could make more money running a couple of Judge Judy ripoffs in the time slot.

Barbara Walters, however, took her daily hour on daytime TV and turned it into a cash cow called "The View." She invented having five women come on and yack about politics for an hour. Feminism for the housewife. Brilliant. You can hate it to death. Like Liberace, she cried all the way to the bank.

Now Megyn Kelly wants to be the new Barbara Walters for the 21st century.

We shall see. I doubt it. But we shall see.

Her buddies in the media see this move as a big deal.

From New York magazine:
Megyn Kelly’s decision to jump from Fox News to NBC resolves one of the last unanswered questions of the Roger Ailes scandal: Would she stay or would she go when her contract ended? With her last show set to air on Friday, Kelly’s departure raises a new series of questions about how transferable her talents are and where Fox News is headed now that the network has lost its biggest star and one of its few hosts with serious mainstream credibility.
Well, except for the fact that she lost 25% of lead-in Bill O'Reilly's audience, the fact that Sean Hannity topped her numbers, and Tucker Carlson is lighting a fire in the 7 O'Clock Hour, she was the Big Star at Fox News.

Also, "mainstream credibility" does not exist. People do not believe the press anymore. Polls show this. The distrust comes from conservatives, liberals, and people in between.

What does Megyn Kelly bring to NBC that it does not already have? Journalistically, she won't land any big interviews from Trumpland, and in case NBC has not noticed, President Trump will run the federal government and control the news cycles for the next eight years.

From a business standpoint, she does not help Comcast's relations with the new administration.

Frankly, there are better and cheaper free agents at Fox News.

But who knows? Maybe America is dying for another TV celebrity who is willing to stand up to the man 95% of the other celebrities stand up to.

The magazine told us a woman would replace her:
Inside Fox News, staffers are speculating over who will replace Kelly. According to insiders I spoke with today, the consensus seems to be that the Murdochs will choose a woman to fill her 9 p.m. time slot. The leading internal contenders include Trish Regan, Shannon Bream, Sandra Smith, and Martha MacCallum. Two sources said Kimberly Guilfoyle is lobbying for the job.
....aaaaaaaaaaaaaand Tucker Carlson replaces her.

Maybe he sits when he pees.

After getting that totally wrong, the magazine said:
The one thing Fox insiders are in agreement on is that whoever replaces Kelly will be a pro-Trump conservative. In the wake of Ailes’s ouster, some media observers speculated that 21st Century Fox CEO James Murdoch wanted to reposition Fox to the center, bringing it more in line with his moderate political views. But the selection of a pro-Trump host to fill Kelly’s slot would suggest that Fox is instead doubling down on its right-wing politics and planning to align itself with the new administration. After initially being hostile to Trump, Murdoch has made moves to curry favor with the president-elect. Fox insiders told me that Murdoch personally named pro-Trump anchor Tucker Carlson to replace Greta Van Susteren at 7 p.m.
That is where the audience is. Never Trump is dead.

Fox News needs to cull the herd of Never Trumpers: George Will, Stephen Hayes, Jonah Goldberg, and yes, even Charles Krauthammer, despite his occasional display if self-deprecating humor.

Frankly, there is room for a second Fox News. Megyn stained the brand. There are people out there who could front a new news network that serves Trump viewers.

NBC instead will follow the foolish flock and flood the market with another Never Trumper.

If NBC officials read "Trump the Press," they would know not to hire Kelly.


Please read "Trump the Press," in which I skewer media experts who wrongly predicted Trump would lose the Republican nomination. "Trump the Press" is available as a paperback, and on Kindle.

It covers the nomination process only. The general election will be covered in a sequel.

For an autographed copy, email me at

Be deplorable. Follow me on Twitter.


  1. I'm interested to see how she does outside of Fox News and Roger Ailes. If she does well, then her successful tenure at Fox was probably in part to her skills. If not, then she was simply a creature of Fox and Ailes.

    I heard that Katie Couric got her old gig back? I'd like to see those two in a cat fight.

  2. "Me-Again" Kelly, as Ace calls her. It's perfect nickname. It's all about her.

    When she interviews someone, younger the feeling it's all about her and what she thinks ...

    ... and never about anything substantive. It's about whatever the media has has the flying around headline of the day. People thought she was tough interviewer but she isn't ... she is focused on minutiae media-driven shallow gotcha controversy.

    Compare that to Tucker, who lets his interviewees take center stage and politely let's them embarrass and hang themselves.

    I love the switch and will never miss her. For those who think NBC is hiring a conservative, she isn't. She's only about herself and the smug insular world of media. Best $25MM Murdoch never spent.

    Tucker actually did something before taking a broadcast slot. Like Breitbart, he built a business. Anyone who ever has had to make payroll - like the plumber with 5 part-timers - earns more respect from me than someone who sits in front of a camera no matter how much they get paid to look pretty ...

    Goodbye Me-Again. DLTDHYOTWO.

  3. Kelly will likely end her years as a bitter old harridan; unloving and unloved.

  4. Who cares? The news should NEVER be about the media that covers it. But what do I know? I'm not getting big bucks to share my opinion with the public!

  5. The gra$$ is always greener on the other side of the fence. - Elric

  6. Great column Don. Will recommend.

  7. Kelly is the Colin Kaepernick of TV cable news: a second rate low-talent player who was (and still is) overpaid and has now been replaced by a much more skilled player, and is likely headed for the practice squad on her new team, while laughing on the way to the bank with her new contract. Financially she's set for life, but unless she does her new show in her lingerie or topless, I don't see her drawing a big audience. She ain't no Barbara Wawa.

  8. You left out Chris Stirewalt, Horrendo Revolver and Karl Rove, Don. Every time I see them appear it's mute time. Ever since the RNC I found myself watching FBN more and more and am glad I did!

  9. They should replace her with Toni Lehran.

  10. "NBC will give her an hourlong daily daytime show. It's a rather girly thing to do, isn't it?"

    The biggest sign of her fall as a serious journalist? The fact that now, her daytime show will probably have a band.

    Half of whom will probably jump up and dash out of the studio if she ever interviews a sniffer dog and handler.

  11. Fox should look at Victor Davis Hansen for comments.

  12. History does, in point of fact, repeat itself, even though those plaques and tangles give one the sense that it doesn't.

    She'll follow a semi parallel path as Jane Pauley after she left the comfort of her fly-over state fangirlz owing to the Gumball studness on the set.

    (Jane who? Readers said)

    The so-called Hindenburg Effect.
    However, it's also a self-fulfilling enterprise in the victimization novelette club.

  13. Fox babes don't usually do well when they leave Fox. Kiran Chetry.

  14. I've watch Fox News since it launched, and here is what I say about Kelly leaving: GOOD RIDDANCE!!, and don't let the door hit your back side when you leave!

  15. I have never cared for Meh-gyn. When I was watching Faux, I would turn it off for her hour almost every time.
    After the character assassination debate, I turned faux off altogether.
    Not sure how the ratings game is scoring these days, does NBC even make the top 100?

  16. I would never hire someone with a history of harassment claims, nor someone who has written a tell-all book.

  17. "Her spin is that she turned down $25 million a year from Fox News to take $15 million a year from Comcast. Who does that?"

    She was not popular with her peers because of her harassment claims so Fox was no longer a pleasant environment to work at. And when you are already a multimillioinaire, you don't need to worry about a few million here or there.

  18. Not only is Anderson Cooper not macho, xhe isn't even a man.

  19. NBC is making a BIG Mistake!! Who's going to watch her for an hour show. That's what we need another one!!! Bad news for sure!!!

  20. This is a really good idea that you have going on.