Andy Cohen had some big shoes to fill as Anderson Cooper’s co-host on CNN’s New Year’s Eve show. Cohen was tapped to replace Cooper’s longtime co-host, Kathy Griffin, on the news network’s live New Year’s Eve countdown show after she was fired for posting a controversial photo of a fake Donald Trump mask last spring. Kathy Griffin co-hosted CNN’s New Year’s Eve broadcast for 10 years before she was terminated by the network in May.
In a live countdown to the ball drop in Times Square, Andy Cohen, and Anderson Cooper braved below freezing temperatures as hosts of CNN’s annual New Year’s Eve bash, which included a lineup of special guests including Amy Sedaris, Celine Dion, Keith Urban, Nicole Kidman, Dave Chappelle, and John Mayer.
But even the A-list star power wasn’t enough to offset Cohen and Cooper’s co-hosting chemistry. Reaction to real-life besties Anderson and Andy’s first #CNNNYE, which included the duo’s handpicked New Year’s resolutions for one other, was lukewarm at best. Social media had a field day over the awkward back and forth banter between the CNN anchor and his Bravo best friend, with many people predicting CNN will beg Kathy Griffin to return to Anderson Cooper’s side for next year’s New Year’s Eve show.
In response to Anderson and Andy’s CNN New Year’s Eve, one viewer posted a GIF of a train wreck to describe the show, while another fan posted a photo of Michael Jackson and Lisa Marie Presley, writing, “Couple with better chemistry than Andy Cohen and Anderson Cooper.” Others felt Anderson Cooper seemed bored by Andy Cohen’s comments (at one point Andy even said it!), while others said Griffin’s wildness balanced out Anderson Cooper’s more conservative style.
You can see more social media reaction to Andy Cohen and Anderson Cooper’s CNN New Year’s Eve below.
Kathy Griffin and Anderson Cooper were close friends for 17 years, but their friendship ended after the comedian posted a controversial fake photo of the severed head of Donald Trump. Cooper publicly stated that he was appalled by Kathy Griffin’s stunt so the comic cut ties with him due to his lack of support in the aftermath of the photo scandal. Griffin told The Cut it took Anderson Cooper two months to reach out to her with a text message after the photo fiasco, and by that time she had decided she no longer wanted to be friends with him.
While Kathy Griffin didn’t spend her New Year’s Eve in Times Square with Anderson Cooper, the comedian did take time to thank her fans for helping her to get through a difficult year in 2017.
“Thank you for all the kind tweets. Happy New Year! KG,” Griffin wrote on Twitter. “I sincerely want to thank all of you who have stuck by me with support, especially since May 30th. You guys have kept me going. I want you to have a better, if not great year ahead.”
You can see highlights from Anderson Cooper’s past CNN New Year’s Eve shows with Kathy Griffin below.