Kelly Ripa returns as TV Land Awards host, even though '07 almost killed her

Dusten Carlson

America's sweetheart (well, one of them anyway) Kelly Ripa returns to host TV Land's annual awards ceremony Sunday night, and it's a gig she simply adores - so much so that she's returning after the hosting duties nearly cost the host her life back in 2007. We'll let her explain:

"One of the shows being honored was ‘The Flying Nun,' " Ripa recounted of the 2007 awards. "So they decided that's how I should make my entrance, as the Flying Nun. They rigged up me in a harness so I could fly in. While they were getting everything in place, they kept telling me not to look down, because if I did, the harness could slip. So I was making my entrance and, like an idiot, I looked down anyway — and I saw Charo. And I was so excited to see Charo that I almost did fall out of the harness."

This year, she got to meet even more classic TV Land stars. 2012 honorees include Laverne Shirley, In Living Color, One Day at a Time, Aretha Franklin and Paul Reubens of Pee-wee's Playhouse. "It was exactly the same feeling this time" as in 2007, Ripa noted. "I was on the stage and thinking, ‘Wow, Laverne and Shirley are looking at me.' "

Though Ripa is playing it safe this year, not risking life-and-limb for some grand entrance, she admits that she still can't contain her giddiness when face-to-face with television's classic icons. "When I saw Laverne and Shirley in the audience," she says, "I almost jumped onto their table. You can never explain to these people how much they meant to you."

Are you tuning in to watch Kelly Ripa host the TV Land Awards?