Megyn Kelly seems to be having her own personal Summer of Yes -- saying yes to every request her new bosses at NBC News can think of to throw at her.
The impetus for this TV Blog was a press release from “The Today Show” that arrived in my email inbox on Friday -- always a slow day for news, and especially so in the dog days of August.
This release provided a video link and the information that fun-loving Megyn went on a camping trip with her family to a New York State Park. A segment on this jaunt aired on “Today” on Friday as part of some sort of “Summer of Yes” series the show has been featuring.
I watched it, but can barely remember a blessed thing about it other than Megyn saying something about making summer memories for her children.
She also played the guitar and gamely tried to sing “Take Me Home, Country Roads” (the John Denver song) before a nighttime campfire.
She admitted she can do neither well -- sing or play the guitar -- and she was right. But the objective of the camping trip was for making memories, not music.
The aim was also to “humanize” Megyn as part of NBC News’ ongoing campaign to promote her in advance of the third hour of “The Today Show” that she'll take over in September.
She's just like the rest of us, the segment seemed to be saying -- except that when she goes camping with her husband and children, an NBC News camera crew comes along too. (That's Megyn and husband Doug in the screen grab above.)
Meanwhile, the same press release reported that Megyn threw out the first pitch Thursday night at a minor league baseball game in Raleigh, North Carolina. Camping, attending minor league baseball games … where does she find the time?
The ballgame appearance was part of an ongoing promotion tour she is on now -- visiting NBC affiliates and pressing the flesh with station managers and the like. This is a long-time practice in old-school network television whenever a new personality with a high profile comes aboard.
The thing that strikes me most about Megyn's Summer of Yes is how different the world of NBC News is from Fox News Channel.
When she was at FNC, I don't recall her ever going on promotional tours, or camping with her family and a camera crew, or throwing out the first ball at baseball games (although maybe she did do this and no one ever wrote a press release about it).
At Fox News Channel and other places, campaigns to “humanize” the air talent are not really part of the game plan.
At Fox News, no effort that I can remember was ever undertaken to “humanize” Megyn Kelly. Instead, she went on TV, did very well and then found herself in a position to command a ton of money from NBC. “Humanizing” her had nothing to do with it.
And yet, network television still believes in these humanizing campaigns. One wonders why they waste time with, say, a segment on a Megyn-family camping trip when what really matters is how she comports herself on TV.
She reportedly takes over Hour 3 of “The Today Show” on September 25.