To say Fox News is treading water these days with conservatives might be an understatement. The network isn’t in full-blown collapse, but its fall has been significant, with MSNBC taking the lead in several primetime slots following the firing of Tucker Carlson. More importantly, the latter has been winning the key advertising demographic (25-54).
That’s led Fox News to furiously promote its “new” primetime line-up, which is really just a reshuffling of the same shows to different time slots. Laura Ingraham moves forward several hours to 7:00 PM followed by Jesse Waters (in Carlson’s old slot), Sean Hannity, and then Greg Gutfeld.
The last addition to the line-up is the most interesting. Despite all the self-inflicted drama at Fox News, Gutfeld’s ratings have remained strong, whether it’s his job hosting The Five or his solo show in primetime. The following clip of him taking down The View over the White House cocaine scandal is a good example of why.
Greg Gutfeld responds to The View's White House cocaine conspiracy theory: "Seeing the ladies of The View try and use deductive reasoning is like watching bears try to do geometry. In fact, I think The View should get their own NBC series, Law & Order, Special Moron Unit." pic.twitter.com/bORjGRQTsx
— Kevin Tober (@KevinTober94) July 18, 2023
GUTFELD: Seeing the ladies of The View try and use deductive reasoning is like watching bears try to do geometry. In fact, I think The View should get their own NBC series, Law & Order, Special Moron Unit.
Amidst all the negative press for the network, Gutfeld provides a bit of levity and humor to a situation that otherwise has people doing anything but laughing. That’s what Fox News needs right now. They need a distraction from their own failings, and I’m certainly not going to blame Gutfeld for providing one. He didn’t make the decision to let Carlson go. In fact, I’d guess he was against it.
As I’ve said before, I don’t expect people to martyr themselves for the cable news wars. I do expect them to adhere to basic consistency when it comes to transgender ideology, but that’s a completely different topic.
The question going forward for Fox News is whether the network can win back its audience by allowing the good personalities it has left to spread their wings. In that sense, putting Gutfeld at the end of the line was probably a strategic mistake. How long are we going to have to see Sean Hannity give the same monologue before he’s taken out of the top time slot? Even before the shake-up, when Gutfeld was at 11:00 PM, he was doubling up Hannity’s ratings in the key demo. That should mean something.
Here’s Gutfeld again showing the unique ability he brings.
Greg Gutfeld just wrecked Geraldo Rivera and The View: "Poor thing. In lieu of flowers we sent up a GoFundMe page to get him a barber. But I credit The View for finally finding a guest with a bigger mustache than their panelists. They're a hairy bunch." pic.twitter.com/XOFaoPv8u4
— Kevin Tober (@KevinTober94) July 14, 2023
In other words, I think Fox News made a good decision to promote Gutfeld to a better time slot, but their cautiousness in not making him the face of primetime will likely cost them in the end. I stopped watching Fox News years ago for different reasons, so I’m not the target, but there are a lot of people out there who used to have the network on constantly who have turned it off. Of all the personalities in the current line-up who have a chance to fix that, Gutfeld is the only one who has the credibility to bring viewers back into the fold that the network has lost.