- An ode to Baba Wawa May 16
Barbara Walters retires from The View and on-air work today, capping a six-decade, ceiling-busting career in broadcast journalism. When Walters first joined NBC in the early 1960s, she was relegated to lighter news segments as a regular "Today Girl," a role she ridiculed as "tea pourer." But within a year she became a reporter-at-large, and in 1963 a co-host of the Today Show (although she wouldn't officially be given the historic title of first female co-host of the program until 1974).
In the decades that followed Walters would secure prestigious interviews, win numerous awards, and build a brand as host that put a premium on listening. That Walters is so easily, if respectfully, mocked in spoofs and Saturday Night Live skits only confirms her influence in the male-dominated broadcast industry. She has inspired countless female journalists (including this one, who highly recommends reading her memoir Audition) and will continue to do so long after her final show.
In honor of Walters' retirement, here's a look back at one of her first on-air appearances on the Today Show in 1961. The content may be fluffy, but Walters is witty, knowing, and utterly infectious as she describes the Paris Fashion week creations that were so expensive she could purchase only one modest new fad — the bedazzled nail ring. --Lauren Hansen
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- Why Pakistan won't hunt down the terrorists within its borders
- Sorry, GOP, tax cuts don't pay for themselves
- How academia's liberal bias is killing social science
- Pope Francis' American problem
- How to be the most productive person in your office — and still get home by 5:30 p.m.
- 10 things you need to know today: December 19, 2014
- 43 TV shows to watch in 2014
- Hey, bosses: Stop giving bonuses to your employees
- Why torture doesn't work: A definitive guide
- 12 holiday gifts for the hardest-to-shop-for people on your list
Subscribe to the Week