“The View” kept the subject matter on the light side for Jenny McCarthy’s debut as the show’s newest co-host.
In past incarnations of “The View,” you may have tuned in expecting to witness a spirited debate on some issue in the news — such as the question of whether the U.S. should attack Syria, for example. But the only “issue” “The View” tackled Monday in its season premiere was the not-very-hot topic of Miley Cyrus’ twerking exhibition at the MTV Video Music Awards 15 days ago.
For the record, “View” co-host Sherri Shepherd was appalled at Miley’s behavior, while new co-host McCarthy, 40, took up the opportunity to put on a twerking exhibition of her own.
And so it went, as “The View” returned for its 17th season — with one new co-host and another position still to be filled, we assume.
To bring you up-to-date, both Joy Behar and Elisabeth Hasselbeck left this summer. McCarthy replaces one of them — which means there’s still a job open. At the same time, Barbara Walters, 83 (she’ll be 84 later this month), is embarking on her final season as she approaches her pre-announced retirement from television next spring.
On that topic, “The View” on Monday announced its intention to give Walters a going-away party that will apparently last all season. On Monday’s show, this meant Walters getting serenaded by crooner Michael Buble, who sang to her as if it was her last show, though it clearly was not.
But that came later. First, there was the welcome celebration for McCarthy, which started with the studio audience awarding her with a standing ovation (goaded, no doubt, by off-camera personnel) and a rousing chant of “Jen-ny! Jen-ny!” that reminded us of the “Jerry Springer Show” chant of “Jer-ry! Jer-ry!”
“You know, first of all I just have to say that I am so grateful to be here, I’m grateful to have a job because I’m a single mother!” McCarthy said after Walters welcomed her to the show. “It’s the best job ever and I feel like the luckiest girl in the world,” she said.
And she should feel that way: Co-hosting “The View” happens to be one of the top jobs in television.
On McCarthy’s first day, most of the show’s attention was paid to her. In one segment, Sherri took Jenny, supposedly a New York newbie, on a tour of Manhattan. But everywhere they went, Jenny was already a familiar figure, especially when they ran into various celebrities such as Donald Trump, Matthew Broderick and “Late Night” bandleader Questlove, who all greeted Jenny like they were old friends.
As if all of that friendship was not enough, the show’s first guest was actor Donnie Wahlberg, who also happens to be McCarthy’s boyfriend. The conversation eventually turned to a chain of hamburger restaurants that Donnie and his family apparently operate — inspiring McCarthy to declare, “His buns are quite delicious!”
What’s the bottom line with Jenny? Well, she certainly has energy to spare. But when the welcome hoopla subsides (as it hopefully will this week), we hope to learn more about where she stands on issues that are more substantial than twerking and her boyfriend’s glutes.