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CNN ordered a more sober Don Lemon for its New Year’s Eve broadcast this year.
New network CEO Chris Licht informed staffers during a town hall this week that CNN would tone down the anchors’ on-air boozing for the company’s New Year’s special, ending a longstanding zany tradition.
Licht told employees he felt on-camera drinking eroded the credibility of CNN. Fair. But what credibility does CNN have to erode? Unfortunately, Licht didn’t explain that part of the equation.
“The Warner Bros. Discovery-backed news outlet wants to pare back some of the antics that have become a staple of its wee-hours coverage of the last night of the year. While Anderson Cooper will still be able to imbibe during primetime hours — along with his co-host Andy Cohen — while the duo holds forth in Times Square, correspondents and anchors who may have slurped down alcoholic concoctions on camera (or off) in the past will be required to halt the practice,” Variety reports.
In essence, Cooper and Cohen can still drink responsibly. But not the others. That means Don Lemon.
Drunken New Year’s antics had become a signature for Lemon. Does anyone remember his performance of “Broke Dick” to end the year of 2021?
We hope your answer is no:
White Power? Not this year:
2022 proved to be an unfortunate period in history for the career of Don Lemon. In addition to losing the only segment per year from which he’d go viral, CNN also demoted him this fall. In September, Licht booted Lemon out of primetime onto a new morning show that doesn’t include his name in the title.
Lemon now shares the mic with two co-hosts Poppy Harlow and Kaitlan Collins. As expected, the morning show routinely ranks last in cable news (CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News) viewership.
Even fewer people enjoy Lemon’s bombastic style in the morning than did in primetime.
Don Lemon might not even be able to drink at home during New Year’s. Again, he has to wake up at 4 am as part of his new demotion.
No more drinking and no more primetime eyeballs. Brutal. Lemon hopes 2023 can turn around his luck. However, we are optimistic it won’t.
Now, the OutKick CNN Challenge continues despite CNN’s changes to its New Year’s edict. For a refresher:
In 2018, an OutKick fan hijacked the CNN special to yell she “loves boobs” in honor of the network banning Clay Travis for his public support of boobs in a segment with former host Brooke Baldwin:
What is CNN without a drunken New Year’s bash?