Morning Joe

I admit it.  I’m an addict.  The minute I get up in the morning I click on Morning Joe on MSNBC and smile to see the familiar morning gang huddled round the table.  Joe and Mika, Willie and Barnicle are just some of the early risers, though Willie is off to co-helm the 9am hour on the Today Show.

Morning Joe is sophisticated and smart TV, from its scrappy discussions and up-to-the minute debates to its cool bumpers and promos with great music and très hip “brewed by Starbucks” graphics.  It is head and shoulders above the other morning shows even though it doesn’t always get the ratings it deserves.

Yup, Joe is out there in right field and Mika sometimes needs to do a better job of reeling him in or cutting him off at the pass when he starts to rant, but the guests are top notch and the news is as fresh as the coffee.

Whether tackling the recent Brown/Warren debate and the missteps by both candidates, analyzing the latest Euro soccer stats or making chit chat author Mark Halperin about Emmy pressure, these knights of the round table are cool, candid and comprehensive in their approach to latest inside- and outside-the-beltway buzz.

And who thought I’d ever wake up to Joplin, Santana and Coldplay – especially in the breaks of a morning news show?  I salute the dudes who came up with the music, graphics and look & feel of Morning Joe.  It’s my kind of show.

I love the show as much as I love my morning coffee.  Cause if its way too early in my place, it’s definitely Morning Joe.

“Today” is So Yesterday

So, what’s going on at the Today show?  Can you imagine what breaks must be like for Ann, Matt and Al this week?  Yipes.

I never thought Ann was the right fit for the hole Meredith left.  Meredith was a vibrant and intelligent co-host, while Ann talks too much and too fast and isn’t an insightful interviewer.  So NBC got it wrong from the start.

I’ve become much more of a fan of Morning Joe these past few months (and I’m not alone).  Not to mention that GMA is coming on strong while Today’s ratings soften from too much soft news.  It’s hard to beat Mika, Joe and Willie’s rat-a-tat-tat style of news banter and the show’s overall energy, style and dynamism.  The Today show seems so stagnant in comparison.

The latest news is Savannah Guthrie will replace Ann.  That’s a step in the right direction, but more of a band-aid than a long-term solution.  Matt is terrific, but is best when he has the right sidekick.

Maybe Today should have conducted an online poll asking viewers their pick for Matt’s co-host.  My pick is to bring back Amy Robach.  She left in May to go to ABC as a news correspondent and has the magic mix of news chops, talent and smarts that’s perfect for the morning chair.

As for Ann?  Though not a fan, it’s tough to watch the show these days while knowing Ann is probably crying in her coffee.  The Holy Trinity is straining to keep it together until Ann vanishes into the green screen (or green room).

Savannah’s got big shoes to fill and they’re not Ann’s.  They’re Meredith’s.  And in my mind, they’re at least a size 10.