Kelly Ripa “Live” Return Video: Watch Reunion With Michael Strahan
As Gossip Cop reported, ABC unexpectedly announced last Tuesday that Strahan will be leaving “Live” to join “Good Morning America” full time. Ripa and the staff of “Live” did not know of the major change until just before the news broke publicly. She was stunned and hurt over being kept in the dark, leading her to skip the Wednesday and Thursday broadcasts.
Now, after scheduled days off on Friday and Monday, she reunited with Strahan this morning for the first time since the drama began. The co-hosts walked out holding hands as they always do, though now under very different circumstances. Ripa received a lengthy standing ovation from the studio audience, before quipping, “Our long national nightmare is over.”
Standing to address viewers toward the front of the stage, Ripa said, “I first want to honestly, sincerely thank you for welcoming me back to the show. The love, the show of support through this bizarre time has been really overwhelming. I really — I needed a couple of days to gather my thoughts. After 26 years with this company, I earned the right, and let’s be honest — I know half of you called in sick to be here, so we get each other.”
“What transpired, though, 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,” the TV personality went on. “And since we’re being honest, I don’t consider this just a workplace. This is my second home.”
She continued, “This is a place that I’ve devoted myself to not just because of you, our loyal viewers, but because of all of the producers and the crew who work on this show. We have an incredible team. We are incredibly devoted to one another. We are family. Apologies have been made, and the best thing to come out of all of this, you guys, is that our parent company has assured me that ‘Live’ is a priority.”
Ripa said of her colleague’s new job, “I am thrilled for Michael. I’m thrilled for you. This is a tremendous opportunity, and I couldn’t be, and we couldn’t be, prouder of you, and everything we accomplished together.” She amusingly went on to add, “My dad, who was a bus driver for 30 years, thinks we’re all crazy. And I think he’s right.”
Meanwhile, Strahan thanked Ripa for the opportunity of being on “Live” and deemed her the “queen of morning television.” She in turn joked that Oprah is the “real queen.” Check out the full video below.