After close to a year of flying solo as a host - or rather, as the only official host on the Live! talk show, with numerous guest co-hosts filling in the chair vacated by Regis Philbin - Kelly Ripa finally has a new permanent co-host for the morning talk show. And fittingly, with the new co-cost comes a new title, replacing the previously titled Live! With Kelly to add on that second name.
Not long after we learned that the new co-host joining Kelly on Live! for the series' 25th season would be revealed in September, rumors surfaced that former NFL star and TV personality Michael Strahan was the man set to fill the role. As he'd previously guest-hosted on the series more than a dozen times, fans of the talk show had numerous opportunities to see how Strahan and Ripa gelled on screen. Hopefully they liked what they saw, because today it was officially announced that Strahan was set to be the permanent co-cost on the morning show.
Per USA Today, Ripa introduced Strahan as the new co-host this morning. He greeted her with a huge hug and they were both showered in balloons. Not a bad way to start off their new working partnership.
"I'm speechless," said Michael, then added, "I adore you. I'm so happy to be part of this. ... You know how they say, it's a dream come true. I truly can't say that because I didn't know I could even dream this."
And with a new host comes a new name for the series. Keeping with the "Live" theme, the show will now be called Live with Kelly and Michael. Kelly gets Regis' old spot in the title, which is fitting, since she's been with the series for more than a decade and assumed the role of the sole host of the series since Regis left the show.
Now we'll have to see how fans of the series respond to the new hosting dynamic on the series. I Strahan the right pick? Will he and Kelly make a good permanent on-screen team?