Julie Chen was a big part of The Talk's 2,000th episode, even though she wasn't physically at the table with her former co-stars. But after a walk down memory lane, fans are getting nostalgic for the original CBS queen bee, who departed the show just ahead of its 9th season last fall.
On Friday, The Talk's current lineup of co-hosts – Sharon Osbourne, Sheryl Underwood, Eve, Carrie Ann Inaba and Marie Osmond -- celebrated the show's milestone 2,000th episode as part of the CBS chat fest's 10-year anniversary. The special episode featured a steady stream of throwback clips from the Emmy-winning show's early days, and Chen was all over them. As The Talk's original "moderator," Chen was the show's newsreader who got the panel to start talking for eight full seasons.
The episode kicked off with a clip of Chen introducing the show's very first topic and poll question -- what is considered the right age to talk to kids about sex.
Osbourne, who is the only remaining original co-host on The Talk since its debut on CBS on October 18, 2010, noted that it was "great" to see Julie in the throwback clips. And on social media, fans agreed. Many fans posted to Twitter and on The Talk's Instagram page to say they had hoped to see Chen make a cameo on the special episode.
"Good show today," one fan wrote. "I thought maybe Julie, Sara, and Aiesha may have popped out!!"
"I miss [Julie Chen] and [Aisha Tyler]," another added. "I Love those old clips of them."Other fans posted on social media to say The Talk isn't the same without Chen at the table. In one of the biggest throwback moments replayed on the 2,000th episode, Chen was front and center as she and then-co-stars Aisha Tyler, Sharon Osbourne, Sara Gilbert, and Sheryl Underwood went "makeup-free" on live television for the show's Season 3 premiere back in 2012. The bare-faced episode was recalled as the No. 1 moment on The Talk.
The 2,000th episode was also a reminder of The Talk's revolving cast. In addition to Chen, Osbourne and Gilbert, the very first season of The Talk featured Leah Remini, Holly Robinson-Peete, and Marissa Jaret Winokur. Aisha Tyler joined the cast in Season 2 and left the show at the end of the seventh season.
Chen shocked fans when she suddenly stepped down from her high-profile post on The Talk in September 2018 amid her husband, former CBS chief Les Moonves', sexual harassment scandal. In her goodbye message, Chen pitched Inaba as her replacement on The Talk panel.