Megyn Kelly has been ringing alarm bells among NBC executives with consistently disappointing ratings for her programs. Surprising new numbers suggest bringing Kelly on board is hurting the major TV network in other ways.
According to Page Six, Megyn Kelly Today is bringing down the ratings of Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb’s hour of the Today program, which immediately follows Kelly’s. Ratings for the follow-up programs to Kelly have been hit with a double-digit plummet in ratings.
An insider has spoken out about the dire situation NBC is facing after taking a major risk with former Fox News host Megyn Kelly. Viewers seem to be turned off by Kelly’s new program, which has been lackluster and hit by controversy.
“Not only are ratings plummeting since Megyn Kelly joined the Today franchise,” the source said. “[B]ut the numbers show Kelly’s lead-in has also affected Kathie Lee [Gifford] and Hoda Kotb’s show, which follows straight afterwards.”
According to the insider, Kelly’s hour of Today is down 32 percent from what it was before the former conservative pundit took over. Meanwhile, the program of Gifford and Kotb is down a shocking 26 percent.
The source continued: “Too many people are tuning out NBC. Hoda and Kathie Lee had been a bright spot in the mornings. People are alarmed.” Another person with insider knowledge said, “The format for Megyn’s show doesn’t make sense. Her show distracts from the Today franchise.”
Others have tried to downplay the network’s concerns. One source familiar with the matter stated: “Megyn posted her highest ratings yet in the ‘key demographic’ on Monday, and she had her biggest total viewer number since the premiere.”
The source continued, “Everyone knows that ratings fluctuate at the start of a new show, and there has been nothing but support for Megyn from all of the Today show hosts. They have each taken her out to lunch — Kathie Lee just took her to lunch today.”
As Christian News Alerts notes, Kelly’s new morning show has received less-than-enthusiastic reception.
She was widely attacked by her viewers after the first episode due to a strange joke about a homosexual fan of the popular NBC show Will & Grace, whose cast appeared on Megyn Kelly Today. Will & Grace star Debra Messing later made a comment expressing regret for doing the interview. “The itinerary just said Today show appearance,” Messing said. “Regret going on. Dismayed by her comments.”
Megyn Kelly Today is bringing down the ratings of Kathie Lee Gifford and Hoda Kotb’s show. Will Megyn get canned?
Kelly has also said she is “done with politics” for now, but the TV personality’s political history continues to haunt her. The liberal-leaning fanbase of the Today franchise associate Kelly with her conservative stances at Fox News. Meanwhile, conservatives have largely rejected Kelly due to her attacks on Donald Trump during the 2016 election.
Kelly was originally given a night-time “magazine” style journalism program at NBC. But as Christian News Alerts reports, her interviews with Russian President Vladimir Putin and right-wing talk-host Alex Jones were widely panned.
According to Business Insider, NBC is paying Kelly between $15 and $20 million. As criticisms against her continue, the network’s executives are likely wondering whether they invested their money wisely.