Just about one year to the day after Michael Strahan left Live! for Good Morning America, Kelly Ripa has announced her selection for his permanent replacement.
And it’s incredibly lame.
Over the weekend, Ripa took to social media to tease the impending addition, telling followers that she’s soon going to "need a bigger mug."
As a caption to a video on Instagram, the beloved morning personality added: "#TuneInToLive #BigAnnouncement #LiveKellyCohost."
So viewers tuned in today with expectations high and curiosity piqued, only for Ripa to come out first thing and announce her new co-host will be…
… RYAN SEACREST?!?
Yes, Ryan Seacrest.
Is he a safe choice? A vanilla choice? A popular entertainment presence who is unlikely to turn off any long-time fans? Sure.
But he’s also the most ubiquitous person in Hollywood. He’s already everywhere, from red carpet specials to daily radio shows and everything in between.
Who’s getting excited to see more of Ryan Seacrest on television?!?
“Today is a very good day,” Ripa told the show’s studio audience at the outset of Monday’s broadcast.
She then thanked all of the stars who had filled in on a temporary basis over the past several months (Anderson Cooper, Andy Cohen, Fred Savage, Jerry O’Connell, etc.) prior to saying she’d reveal the new co-host "after the break."
For those unaware, this was a reference to Seacrest’s famous cliffhanger teases nearly every week on American Idol.
And when the commercials ended, Seacrest walked out on to the set.
“I couldn’t be more excited to be here with you,” he said once Ripa introduced him.
Ryna joked about how he had to duck down in the backseat of a car when entering the studio’s parking area earlier that morning in order to keep the secret.
"Take a bow! Take a bow!" Ripa chimed in.
Last spring, Strahan announced he was leaving Live!, angering Ripa because she was not informed of this decision until the very last moment.
Viewers were then treated to some of the most awkward moments in live television history, with such tension existing between Ripa and Strahan that the latter moved up his departure date by four months.
Said Ripa upon returning to work last April, following a brief walk-out in protest of how Strahan’s departure was handled:
"What transpired over the course of a few days has been extraordinary in the sense that it started a much greater conversation about communication and consideration and, most importantly, respect in the workplace."
We’re all for respect in the workplace.
We also would have been all for Richard Curtis as Ripa’s permanent co-host, considering the great impression that contest winner left on viewers during his multiple guest-hosting stints.
Live! blew a chance to build some real buzz with Curtis, to create a star from nothing.
Instead of making this kind of splash, however, producers chose to barely even make a ripple.
Do you agree with this assessment?
Do you wish Live! had gone in a different direction?
VOTE below: Are you excited for Ryan Seacrest as co-host of Live!?