Clarkson’s first guest was scheduled to be comedian Kevin Hart, but he had to cancel after suffering major back injuries in a car accident last week. His Jumanji co-star Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson filled in, reportedly abandoning his honeymoon early to help her out. The conversation was fine. She made him sing a bit of “9 to 5" as well, which reaffirmed my belief from 10 minutes ago that this show is just karaoke without the booze.

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Screenshot: NBC

The next segment was something called “Rad Human,” where Clarkson celebrates people doing good in their community. In the debut, she meets a woman named Sharon who ran a food pantry, the Sunshine Pantry in Beaverton, Oregon, which was forced to close due to lack of funding. Instead of presenting her with a giant check, Clarkson brings out members of her community who drop a giant basket of money (supposedly totaling $20,000) onto the tiny woman. Then Clarkson hands her a human-sized check for $10,000. She cries. Sharon, noticeably, does not cry.

The premiere ended with Clarkson handing out bundt cakes and Skyping with some white moms whose viral social media post she enjoyed. In true parodic fashion, they’re drinking wine. And that’s it. It’s over, and I’m a little bit older.


Save for all the singing and the thinly veiled Christian messaging (church is mentioned at least twice), The Kelly Clarkson Show’s main draw is Clarkson’s unrivaled enthusiasm that could put Kelly Ripa to shame. If you’ve ever desired a daytime talk show where the host is a critically acclaimed pop superstar who screams for an hour, look no further.

But will I continue to watch The Kelly Clarkson Show? Definitely not. It’s September and a brand new schedule of fall television is upon us. Then again, this show is not for me; I am not a mom and do not inhale positive pro-women affirmations like vape smoke. I do think the program has potential, however—much more than, say, Busy Philipps’ late night catastrophe. People seem to enjoy talk shows reserved for the aggressively likable (Clarkson) in conversation with the extremely endearing (The Rock). I suppose it’s nice to tune in and turn off your brain in the mid-afternoon to laugh at cheap jokes and forget about the world for 60 minutes. Ellen is on right afterward.