Thursday, June 01, 2006

Sentimental send-off for Couric

Show pulls out all the stops

"Today" said goodbye to Katie Couric on Wednesday after 15 years of moments and memories on TV's No. 1 morning show.

With only a few nods to the news and weather during its three-hour run, "Today" threw a big party on the plaza at Rockefeller Center that featured Couric, longtime co-host Matt Lauer, Couric's two daughters and parents as well as the rest of the cast and crew and several surprises.

Couric said in April that she would be leaving "Today" for the anchor/managing editor job at "CBS Evening News." Couric will be replaced by "The View's" Meredith Vieira, but NBC has, since early April, devoted increasing amounts of time to honoring Couric, who has been -- with Lauer -- the face of "Today" for years. The Boston Herald has details.

Couric's farewell special on NBC's "Today" was watched by 8.4 million people, according to Nielsen Media Research figures. It ranked as the biggest audience for a single "Today" telecast since the morning after the 2004 elections, when 9 million watched. Since 1987, the only other "Today" shows watched by more viewers were those that followed the 1989 San Francisco earthquake and the 2000 election.

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Dennis Fermoyle said...

So this was it for Katie!I never really watched the Today Show, because the only news show that came on early enough for me was Fox and Friends First. I find Fox's morning hosts opinionated and annoying, but it was either that or Ag Day on NBC, and finding out the price of soybeans just doesn't ring my chimes. It will be interesting to see how this works out for both the Today Show and CBS.

Deb S. said...

Dennis: It will be interesting to see how Katie transitions to the CBS Evening News and how Meredith Vieira does on "Today" when she teams up with Matt Lauer. BTW, welcome to my "other" world. ;-)

Ian Lidster said...

Dating myself, I was always an avowed Jane Pauley fan and thought she was treated abysmally when she was bumped. That aside, I was never a Katie Couric afficionado. As a longtime newspaper guy, I thought she was a lousy reporter whose biases and attitudes effectively killed any perceived objectivity. For what it's worth, I thought I would get my two bits in. Ta-da

Deb S. said...

Ian: I'm a big Jane Pauley fan, also.

As for Katie, I think she was a good fit for "Today." She annoyed me sometimes. However, in my book, she's definitely a seasoned journalist.

There was great chemistry between Katie, Matt, Ann, and Matt. They made a good morning team.

CBS Evening News definitely needs an infusion of freshness, but let me say that I have a great deal of respect for Bob Schieffer. It will be a while before we see Katie on the evening news, but I think we'll see her on 60 Minutes relatively soon.

Thanks for stopping by.