Kelly Ripa’s co-host hasn’t been announced just yet, but we might be closer to having a permanent replacement for Michael Strahan. As the Inquisitr reported, fan favorite Jerry O’Connell went to the top of the list after surviving the show’s historical Halloween episode, but there’s one person in the running that might be underestimated.
Before we reveal who that person is, it’s important to note that O’Connell really solidified himself as the guest co-host to beat. From the very beginning, his name has been on the short list to replace Michael Strahan at Live! with Kelly. While the guest co-hosts have rotated, and a lot of men have received the chance to sit beside Kelly Ripa, it’s Jerry O’Connell that has returned for the bigger episodes.
As stated, Jerry O’Connell was present as Kelly Ripa’s co-host during the Halloween episode, and it seemed as if he excelled at the challenge. The episode saw the two dress up in multiple costumes. The two dressed up as Harley Quinn and the Joker from the popular Warner Bros. film Suicide Squad, which went over well. The pair also dressed up as characters from the popular hit musical Hamilton for a photo op. They even went back to the 90s to dress up as Pikachu and Ash from the popular anime series Pokemon.
Months ago, Jerry O’Connell praised Kelly Ripa for being able to balance it all as a mother and co-host of Live!
“She has it all figured out as a parent. It’s incredible to see how she’s found balance with career, marriage, and parenthood.”
Kelly Ripa also had praise for O’Connell as a potential co-host saying, “Not only was he perfection on camera, he was perfection off camera.”
— E! News (@enews) November 7, 2016
That said, will Kelly Ripa’s co-host go to a regular Joe? There’s definitely a chance. As the Inquisitr reported, ABC and Kelly Ripa hosted a Live with Kelly and You, where a contest was held to make a regular person co-host for a day. Out of twenty contestants, Souderton high school teacher Richard Curtis went on to win the contest and sat next to Kelly Ripa for the day. That was supposed to be the extent of his run on Live! with Kelly! but as it turns out, Curtis charmed the audience, so ABC asked him to return. According to Daily Mail, Curtis was brought back again due to popular demand, which is a good sign for Curtis.
If Curtis seemed at ease, it’s because the only approval he needed was from his students, who were in the audience. A local ABC affiliate spoke with the teacher as he mentioned his students, “I kept looking at my students and seeing their smiling faces, laughing, and enjoying themselves really made this whole journey completely worth it.”
— ET Canada (@ETCanada) November 7, 2016
When he spoke about being Kelly Ripa’s co-host for the second time, the high school teacher joked, ‘It’s amazing how daytime talk shows have taken over the school.”
He said that he had to tell himself, “wake up, you’re dreaming.” When asked back to co-host Live! he said it felt “fantastic.”
If that’s not confirmation, a source told ET that executives at ABC “really” like Richard Curtis, and he’s “definitely in the running.”
That said, not everyone is a “fan” of Richard. As the father explained, his five-year-old daughter said she would rather watch the Disney channel than her father.
Do you think Kelly Ripa’s co-host will be Richard Curtis or Jerry O’Connell?
[Featured Image by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images]