Sarah Palin made her lamestream-media debut on America’s No. 1 morning TV show. And I have to say I was disappointed. Not because she was invited to co-host the 8 a.m. hour of the “Today” show, but because the best-selling author and reality-television star who was the governor of Alaska and the 2008 Republican vice presidential nominee herself was disappointing.
Palin is a natural-born star. She has that indefinable “it” factor that undeniably pops through the television screen. It was on display at the top of the show, when she was shown sitting on the famed couch reading a newspaper — a visual slap at Katie Couric, the woman who used to rule the “Today” show set and whose CBS interviews in 2008 revealed Palin to be as substantive as cotton candy. Couric also happens to be substitute-anchoring on ABC’s “Good Morning America,” “Today’s” rival, this week. But by the end of her hour-long NBC stint, Palin became a bit of a dud.
Oh, jeez, Matt. The nicest lady in the world. She stopped me and asked me where I was headed. I said, “30 Rock.” And she, “Oh, honey, come here! I told you Tina Fey is here. It’s her! It’s her!”
It was funny. Palin sparkled. Yet when it came time for her to co-host, she was a bit of a dud.
Palin’s rather lengthy comments during some of the interviews caused me to tweet, “Um . . . is Palin co-hosting or co-guesting every segment?”
It’s a tough transition to go from guest or contributor to anchor. And being a great guest does not a fabulous anchor make automatically. Trust me, I know of what I speak. One must understand the differences in the roles and to learn how to command the screen.
Palin has the latter piece down pat. She just needs to learn that, in the anchor chair, it’s not about you (so much) as it is about them (the guest, the audience). With practice, Palin would become a pro in no time. I’m just not sure how I feel about her getting more practice on the small screen’s big stage.