Hoda Kotb, with co-anchors Al Roker and Craig Melvin alongside her, launched NBC’s new third hour of the Today show, calling it a “new chapter” for the embattled show after the turbulent departure of Megyn Kelly from the show's timeslot after her “blackface” controversy. Kelly’s name and any reference to the negotiations around her exit from NBC—and the circumstances of her show’s cancellation—went unmentioned. Kotb told viewers they were opening the new program “with heavy hearts,” referring to Saturday’s synagogue mass-shooting in Pittsburgh, where co-anchor Savannah Guthrie was reporting from. As for the new show, Kotb said, “Today, as you know, we are starting new chapter in the third hour of our show. As it evolves, we want you to know that the entire Today family will continue to bring you informative and important stories just as we always have.” After the Pittsburgh segment, the third hour continued in what looked like Kelly’s old studio, fronted by Melvin, Roker, and Jenna Bush Hager, with a piece on spooky Halloween locations.
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