Katie Couric debuted her new daytime television show on Monday (September 10, 2012) though despite breaking ratings records, it didn’t go down well with critics. Couric welcomed the likes of Jessica Simpson and Sheryl Crow as guests onto her inaugural show, though her line of questioning was deemed far too fluffy.
The New York Daily News critic David Hinckley slammed the show for being far too safe, saying, “She was friendly, gentle and warm…. She brought out her old cheerleading teammates from junior high school in Arlington, Va. She did everything but paint her toenails…” The audience – around 98 per cent female – seemed happy enough with Couric’s segments, though critics took aim at her interview with Jessica Simpson in particular. The former CBS star has proven herself as a serious journalist and is anything but a pushover, though the Simpson interview was essentially one huge promotion for Weight Watchers. Recent reports have suggested Jessica is being paid somewhere in the region of $4 million to lose her baby-weight, though Couric avoided asking about such details and let Simpson plug her famous dieting brand. The Houston Chronicle picked up on this in their scathing review of the show, saying the interview “…morphed into an infomercial with a clip from Simpson's new commercial for Weight Watchers,” adding, “And just when we thought the shilling was over, Couric told her TV audience how they could join Simpson's weight-loss journey and receive two free weeks of Weight Watchers membership.”
Nevertheless, ‘Katie’ earned the highest daytime premiere ratings since ‘Dr Phil’s’ launch in 2002. We just don’t think Oprah has anything to worry about, that’s all.