Saturday marks two years to the day since Roger Ailes, Fox News’ longtime chairman and CEO and the programming genius behind its overwhelming success and influence, parted ways with the network amid sexual harassment allegations.
As a result, more major changes — both in front of and behind the camera — have occurred at Fox since July 21, 2016, than did in the previous 20 years combined. Not only has Fox survived but it has exceeded its pre-Ailes numbers, despite losing huge names such as Bill O'Reilly, Megyn Kelly and Greta Van Susteren, who comprised 75 percent of Fox's primetime lineup. With those 7, 8 and 9 p.m. hosts gone in the span of nine months, between September 2016 and April 2017, the challenge was to reinvent itself in the evening without going outside the shop to do it.
Enter Tucker Carlson, Martha MacCallum and Laura Ingraham, three former hosts at other networks who had settled in with Fox's audience over the years — to the point that the whole get-to-know-you stage could be avoided, if inserted into primetime.