Every Halloween a very special and horrible tradition is enacted on Today, the annual donning of group costumes. Anyone who has ever attempted a group costume knows the special hell that is pulling one together. (Tina doesn’t WANT to be Monica, she wants to be Rachel! Jerry doesn’t have time to find the cheetah print leggings we ALL agreed we would wear. Brad and his horrible girlfriend have a REALLY EDGY AND TOPICAL idea he wants to do instead!) But the folks at the Today show have the assistance of a small army of make-up artists and seamstresses to pull together whatever idea they came up with. The sky is the limit. And watching the cast members who got dragged into an uncomfortable smile for the camera is part of the twisted fun of this yearly spectacle. Let us never forget the unique horror of the gang as the Peanuts.
In the wake of Megyn Kelly’s disastrous panel discussion about inappropriate Halloween costumes—where she infamously defended blackface—there was likely extra pressure to pull off something fun and controversy-free. So Today went totally ’80s, living their rock star fantasies and referencing a slew of classic movies and also Top Gun.
Willie Geist twisted and shouted as Ferris Bueller.
Meteorologists Al Roker and Dylan Dreyer popped out of a DeLorean as Doc and Marty from Back to the Future.
Craig Melvin rolled up as Eddie Murphy’s Prince Akeem from Coming to America.
Jenna Bush Hager was the Goose to Peter Alexander’s Maverick for a Top Gun team up.
Kathie Lee Gifford has long gotten the shit end of the group costume stick, playing a wolf when they went fairy tales and Woodstock in the Peanuts fiasco. (Can you tell I used to watch Today obsessively?) But this year, she was living for her Material Girl moment.
Carson Daly as Bruce Springsteen is a thing that happened.
Sheinelle Jones slayed as Tina Turner.
And Savannah Guthrie offered a sugary sweet Cyndi Lauper.
While Hoda Kotb gave her all as Elton John.
Overall, it was pretty cute and surprisingly disaster-free! In the video below, you can see the whole cast in action.
And yet I can’t help but wonder what Megyn Kelly was supposed to go as.
I saw Jones’s Tina Turner and panicked for a moment, ‘Oh! Was that why Kelly veered into the blackface defense? WAS SHE PLANNING TO DO IT ON TV AS TINA TURNER!?’ But as giddily as NBC has played into conservatives’ hands by promoting Trump on their late night shows and paying former Fox News anchor Kelly an insane $69 million to join their ranks, I can’t imagine that would have gone down.
Then, I wondered briefly if Kelly was originally intended for Gifford’s Madonna moment. Or maybe the ousted Megyn Kelly Today host was going to be something she truly loves, like Ronald Reagan’s trickle-down economics? But I suspect that all the weeks of prep wouldn’t be wasted. So whatever Kelly was expected to do was still on that stage. My guess? I bet she was supposed to be the Kelly McGillis character, Charlie. Bush Hager is one of the few cohosts who seems to be able to stand Kelly, and so might agree to the rehearsals and team costume. Plus, the show’s Twitter account noted executive producer Libby Leist was cameoing. Perhaps she was substituting? Or maybe Kelly was meant to be that maniac Iceman?
What do you think Megyn Kelly’s intended costume was going to be?
Header Image Source: NBC