Al Roker and Hoda Kotb Have ‘Lady and the Tramp’ Moment on ‘Today’ Show
It’s amoré! Hoda Kotb and Al Roker shared a Disney moment while enjoying a candy bar together on the Today show.
“We heard y’all: Al is eating the PayDay — and sharing it with @hodakotb,” the morning show’s official Twitter account wrote during the Wednesday, March 29, episode alongside a clip of Roker, 68, with his favorite snack — a giant PayDay bar. While the weatherman initially said the candy didn’t look appealing, Twitter users rallied for Roker to take a taste while live on air.
Roker eventually accepted the challenge, requesting that Kotb, 58, enjoy the tasty delight with him. “Here, would you help me?” he asked, to which the Dateline alum agreed.
The twosome then shared the delicious dessert by biting into opposite ends of the same piece — and reenacted one of Disney’s most classic films.
“Kind of a Lady and the Tramp moment,” Roker joked as they bit into the chewy peanut butter candy. The twosome then both “yummed” in unison while cohost Craig Melvin quipped, “There’s the meme!” Later that day, the Today show Twitter posted a snap of the hilarious exchange next to a photo from the 1955 animated film, which features the titular dogs sharing a single spaghetti noodle.
The lighthearted moment comes on the heels of an upsetting few months for both of the Today cohosts. Last month, Kotb sparked concern among fans when she was missing from several live tapings.
Melvin, 43, eventually explained the reason for Kotb’s absence during the March 1 episode. “As for Hoda, we know a lot of you have been wondering how she’s doing. We can tell you that Hoda’s OK. She’s got a family health matter that she’s been dealing with, so we look forward to seeing Hoda and Savannah back at the desk real, real soon,” he said. (Savannah Guthrie tested positive for COVID-19 in February but returned to the news desk shortly after.)
After several days away, Kotb rejoined her colleagues on camera on March 6 and revealed details about 3-year-old daughter Hope’s ICU stay. “[She was] in the hospital for a little more than a week,” she explained while holding back tears. “I’m so grateful she’s home. … I was waiting for that day to come. And we are watching her closely. I’m just so happy.” (Kotb shares Hope and daughter Haley, 5, with her ex-fiancé, Joel Schiffman, from whom she split in December 2021 after eight years together.)
Roker, meanwhile, who lost 100-lbs before undergoing gastric bypass surgery in 2002, has faced multiple health scares over the years. The NBC News anchor — who has helmed the NBC morning show since 1996 — made headlines when he missed several November 2022 broadcasts after doctors discovered that he had blood clots.
“So many of you have been thoughtfully asking where I’ve been. Last week I was admitted to the hospital with a blood clot in my leg which sent some clots into my lungs,” Roker wrote via Instagram at the time. “After some medical whack-a-mole, I am so fortunate to be getting terrific medical care and on the way to recovery. Thanks for all the well wishes and prayers and hope to see you soon.”
Roker ultimately needed to undergo surgery, resulting in the New York native missing the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade for the first time in 27 years.
The TV journalist was admitted to the hospital several days later following complications.
“It’s been a tough slog, I’m not gonna deny this,” Roker said during a virtual appearance on Today at the time. “It’s been the hardest one yet, and you know I’ve had my share of surgeries. I’m doing physical therapy every day, occupational therapy. I’ve got to just get my strength back. … I feel good. I feel strong. Every day I feel a little bit better.”
In January, Roker — who has been married to Deborah Roberts since September 1995 — made his Today show return.
“I lost half my blood. [My doctors] were trying to figure out where it was,” he said during his first broadcast back, revealing his surgeons found that he had two bleeding ulcers and discovered that they needed to resect his colon and remove his gallbladder. “I really do feel good. I’m sure I’m going to collapse like a stone after this is over because this is the first work I’ve done. It’s been a journey.” (Roker was previously diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2020, which resulted in surgical intervention.)
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