Tyra Banks hit back at Dancing with the Stars fans who have repeatedly called for Tom Bergeron to return as host. The supermodel had some choice words for those who questioned ABC’s decision to have her replace Tom — who had previously hosted every season since the show began in 2005 — and Erin Andrews, as she pointed out that ratings have been up ever since her first episode aired earlier this month.
“It is always challenging when you step into something. At the same time, I knew what I was getting into,” Tyra told Parade.com following September 28’s Disney Night episode, when asked about the intense backlash.
“You do know that when you’re stepping into something new, people are like, ‘I want what I’m used to.’ But at the same time, my ratings are up 38 percent, which is unprecedented crazy, crazy numbers, and so that’s the validation that we’re doing something right,” she continued.
Tyra, who was also brought on as an Executive Producer, shared praise for her co-stars over the impressive bump.
“It’s not just me, it’s the cast, it’s the judges, it’s this next-level producing that is creating this beautiful thing that more people than ever are watching, so I’m happy to be here,” the former America’s Got Talent host said.
The star has repeatedly faced criticism from fans wanting Tom and Erin back, with some viewers even claiming that they would refuse to tune in to the latest season without the former hosts.
Tyra also opened up during the interview about the decision to send someone home during last night’s show, as traditionally no one is eliminated during Disney Week.
The America’s Next Top Model star denied she had anything to do with the decision to switch things up. She said it was the producing team that put the twist in, which saw Tiger King star Carole Baskin sent home because they decided somebody had to go.
Tyra has been keeping a close eye on DWTS‘ ratings over the past few weeks and has shared her excitement over the rising numbers on Twitter multiple times.
She most recently gushed over the viewing figures last week.
Tyra tweeted — as seen here — that she was “touched” by how many people watched the September 22 episode, which aired on Tuesday instead of its usual Monday evening slot. She proudly pointed out with a winking face emoji that it was the most watched in the 18-49 demographic even though it aired on a different night.