Obviously, Guthrie received a warm welcome back to the show, where her arrival was announced by co-host Matt Lauer, who read her name off an Oscars envelope. She had a big first day back, joining Lauer to interview former President George W. Bush about his new painting project, “Portraits of Courage: A Commander in Chief’s Tribute to America’s Warriors.”
Guthrie’s son was born Dec. 8, and she had previously announced that she would make her return to Today on March 3. Her surprise return was spoiled a little early by Sunday Today host Willie Geist, who announced, “We cannot wait to see our good friend Savannah right back in this studio tomorrow.”
Soon after the accidental reveal, Guthrie took to Instagram to explain to her fans why she decided to cut her maternity leave short.
“Because I literally couldn’t wait!!” she wrote, along with a couple of heart emojis.
But wait. Is that really all there is to this story?
There have been a ton of rumors flying about Today lately, especially since it was announced that former Fox News star Megyn Kelly had been snatched up by NBC during contract negotiations. Kelly is joining Today and already edged out Tamron Hall, who was bumped from the show’s lineup to make room for its incoming star. Rumors said that Guthrie’s job was also in jeopardy, and insiders described a volatile, back-stabbing culture at Today as hosts wondered if they were going to get cut to make room for Kelly. Could that have spurred Guthrie’s early return? We may never know.