If it seems like nothing is going right for Megyn Kelly lately, that’s because it hasn’t.After a long contract dispute with Fox News, the once popular anchor started off her new job with multiple gaffes, including a terrible interview with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Although some may claim that the long break from TV has left her a little rusty, time doesn’t seem to be helping the embattled Kelly. Despite having strong ratings during her first show, subsequent shows have seen her audience plummet. Evidently, viewers weren’t very impressed after the first time they tuned in.Somehow, the drama surrounding Kelly only increased this week. Perhaps in a bid to drum up interest in her show, Kelly conducted an interview with controversial conspiracy theorist Alex Jones. News of the interview caused immediate backlash, especially from families that were victimized by the Sandy Hook massacre. Jones once called the tragedy a hoax, causing some to accuse Kelly of giving him a national platform he didn’t deserve.
From there, things started to get really bizarre.
After releasing a promotion for the interview that appeared to cast Jones in a negative light, the conspiracy theorist leaked secretly recorded conversations he had with Kelly on the internet. Not only that, he threatened to release eight more hours of recordings if NBC didn’t make an uncut version of the interview public.If anything, you’d think all the controversy surrounding the interview would get some desirable ratings for Kelly. However, not even that was able to break her way. When the dust settled, Kelly’s much anticipated interview turned out to be a giant ratings bust.
From the Hill:
Megyn Kelly’s controversial interview with Alex Jones on NBC ended up a distant third in the network ratings race during its first half hour on Sunday night.According to Nielsen Media Research, “Sunday Night with Megyn Kelly” brought in an average of 3.5 million viewers, marking the fewest viewers the show has drawn since debuting on June 4.
Even worse, Kelly’s show performed worse than a re-run of America’s Funniest Home Videos:
Among the key 18 to 49-year-old demographic that advertisers covet most, a re-run of ABC’s “America’s Funniest Home Videos” beat Kelly and “60 Minutes” by almost 40 percent.Reactions to the interview were mixed. Although some praised her tough line of questioning, others claimed she was soft on pushing for answers.
All told, the gamble did not appear to pay off for Kelly. Despite drumming up plenty of attention, her ratings continued their free fall. Moreover, her handling of the interview and the leaked recordings called her integrity into question. If you didn’t think things could get worse for her, just stay tuned.
[Note: This post was authored by Michael Lee. Follow him on Twitter @UAMichaelLee]