How many talk show hosts do you need to have a successful daytime program?
I ask this because I’m watching The Chew, a new show airing on ABC that features five chefs/lifestyle experts sharing tips on everything from how to make lasagna to setting the perfect table. The hosts are celebrity chefs Mario Batali and Michael Symon, Top Chef fan favorite Carla Hall, What Not to Wear’s Clinton Kelly, and Dr. Oz’s daughter and healthy living expert Daphne Oz.
The View has five co-hosts, as does The Talk. Now I have another question: why do all of these shows have to have two word titles that start with “the”?
So far, The Chew is not a terrible show (despite the kind of weird name). I like Mario, Michael, and Carla. I am not the biggest Clinton Kelly fan strictly because I don’t care for What Not to Wear, and this is the first time I’ve seen Daphne Oz, but so far they are not annoying me. Actually, unlike The View and The Talk, I think the five co-hosts work.
I saw The Talk once for a few minutes and wanted to just give up television forever. It was boring, the co-hosts had no chemistry, and the topic was dumb (so dumb, in fact, that I forgot what it was!). The problem I have with The View is the fact that it seems to be illegal on that set to let one person talk at a time. I can’t handle two or more voices at once, and that’s all they do over there.
On The Chew, there’s no fighting over who gets to speak, and each segment is led by one or two of the hosts with assistance from the others. It feels pretty relaxed, and I like the topics so far that have been discussed. On this episode, Joy Behar was on, sharing her recipe for lasagna, but I’m not sure if each one is going to have a guest or not. I don’t think the show necessarily needs guests, although it does liven it up a bit.
Executives must think that the more hosts with their own speciality on a show, the more people will tune in. That makes sense to a certain extent, because in this case there are five demographics being pulled in instead of just one, but if I am a fan of Italian cooking, I will probably just tune into a show strictly about Italian cooking. I don’t necessarily care about the best centerpieces or how to stop myself from eating cupcakes.
The Chew really appeals to those who enjoy all things food and entertaining. Would it work with just one person? Yes, if it’s Martha Stewart. In this case, I think it definitely is best as an ensemble. Today, it held me over as I ate my lunch and took a break from editing, but I’m not sure I would tune in every day. At the very least, it’s much better than the previews and reviews had led me to believe.
What do you think? Do you like the show? How many hosts do you want to see on a talk show? Is five way too many, or the magic number?