Ignore those rumors that Hoda and Kathie Lee, goddesses of Today’s sad fourth hour, want nothing to do with Billy Bush. During Bush’s first official day off the Today show docket, the pair started their show by sending him their thoughts and prayers, certainly far more genuinely than their coworkers have done so far.
While Matt Lauer sternly said farewell to Billy at the start of the show, by comparison, Hoda and Kathie Lee sent him rainbows and puffy clouds.
“Our good friend Billy Bush is no longer here at Today,” Hoda said.
“He has been a joy for us, he was only here for about nine weeks, he was so much fun to be around, always up for anything, a real team player, we’re really really going to miss him. Our thoughts and prayers go to him and his family,” Kathie Lee added.
“Yeah, I loved working with him when he was here and he filled in for Kath, we got a chance to go see the Zac Brown Band and party it up and have some fun and we just want Billy and everyone to know that we wish him nothing. but. the. best,” Hoda continued, emphasizing those last few words.
“He would like that, if we did this, to Billy,” Kathie said, raising her glass full of white wine to Hoda’s for a patented *clink*.
The pair then somehow seamlessly transitioned into Kathie Lee discussing her deceased husband Frank and how this day would have been their 30th wedding anniversary, spurred by the mere mention of their upcoming guest, Carole Bayer Sager. Kathie Lee then sang along to a rendition of Carole’s song “The Prayer” by none other than Celine Dion and Andrea Bocelli.
“I love you, I love you,” Kathie said, presumably to Frank and full of emotion, as guest Andrew Rannells looked on, perhaps wondering what he was doing there and if it was too late to reschedule this appearance. “I had no intention of saying that, but sometimes, that’s what I love about working with you Hoda-woman, I can just be real. A real pain in the butt!