‘Karamo’ gets picked up for fall production commitment
While it was rumored NBCUniversal was going to launch a new talk show to replace the retiring Maury Povich, they made it official today with the announcement of Karamo.
Hosted by Queer Eye cast member Karamo Brown, the new hour-long strip has been cleared in 90 percent of the country for a September start with Weigel’s Chicago stations CW 26 and The U on board. While a description of what the show would be about is a bit vague, Karamo is shaping up to be an old-school relationship topics show, not the celeb-fashion-lifestyle focused projects we’ve seen for the last few years. The program will be produced at NBCU’s studios in Stamford, Conn.
Brown is a cast member of Queer Eye, a sequel to the former Bravo series Queer Eye For The Straight Guy, which ran from 2003-07 and was rebooted by Netflix in 2018. According to Wikipedia, “Each episode features a team of gay professionals in the fields of fashion, personal grooming, interior design, entertaining and culture collectively known as the “Fab Five” performing a makeover (in the parlance of the show, a “make-better”), usually for a heterosexual (straight) man: revamping wardrobe, redecorating, and offering advice on grooming, lifestyle, and food.” The show’s scope was broadened a few years later to makeover individuals regardless of sexual orientation.
In the current version, Brown is the “culture and lifestyle” expert in the Fab Five, with a focus on relationships and social interaction.
“Karamo has done an incredible job guest hosting Maury many times over the past two seasons. Karamo is a true fan of the genre who will bring that passion, along with his unique skill set and life experiences to guide his guests through life’s dramatic crossroads and build a lasting connection with the daytime audience,” NBCUniversal syndication Studios and E! News executive vice-president Tracie Wilson said in a statement. “Karamo is the next generation of compelling relationship-based talk, with a truly special host and we are so happy to offer this show to our station partners across the country.”
Outside of Chicago, the show was sold to Nexstar stations in top markets including WPIX New York, KTLA Los Angeles, and WPHL Philadelphia. Karamo is likely to be paired with NBCU’s The Steve Wilkos Show, assuming it returns. The show could also be paired with Maury reruns, though it isn’t known on how many stations. In New York, Maury airs on Fox’s WWOR-TV, who moved there in 2020 after a long run at WPIX.
Karamo has cleared other station groups including Tegna, Scripps, Sinclair, CW Plus, and Sunbeam’s WSVN Miami and WLVI Boston, among others.
This comes as several syndicated series this season were either canceled or are ending their runs, Maury included. The real question is whether there is still an appetite for conflict-talk given the genre has fallen out of favor over the years (the dysfunction junction you see in politics are making trash-talkers look tame by comparison.) Hopefully, Karamo doesn’t turn out to be paternity test central because if this is nothing more than a Maury clone, then this show will not succeed.