The Today Show's attempt to counterpunch Good Morning America's Katie Couric guest-anchor spot this week has already hit a snag. Today teased that a "legend" was scheduled to appear tomorrow morning. And, yes, it was a chimpanzee named "J. Fred Muggs":
J. Fred Muggs, a chimpanzee who was a sidekick of sorts to the first host of "Today," Dave Garroway, when the morning show started in the 1950s. The chimpanzee, believed to be housed in Florida, was noticeably absent when "Today" brought back its former hosts for a 60th anniversary special in January.
NBC flirted with the idea of bringing on another chimp — dressed as Katie Couric — to help out J.Fred tomorrow but all chimpanzee co-hosts were canceled just a couple hours ago due to legal reasons, according to sources. Now Today finds itself legend-less and monkey-less for tomorrow after heavily promoting it. Instead, the show will either have former hosts Bryant Gumbel or Meredith Viera as a last minute fill-in.
Other non-simian guests Today has lined up for this week to battle Couric on GMA include Sarah Palin on Tuesday and numerous reality stars, including Kim Kardashian on Thursday whom we're told will have a "more prominent" role.