With Maddow's timeslot competitor Chris Cuomo out at CNN, would MSNBC really allow Maddow to step down from The Rachel Maddow Show? "The contract extension that Maddow signed over the summer is reported to pay her $30 million a year through the 2024 election," says Joe DePaolo. "According to those reports, the working terms of the deal call for Maddow to “end” her nightly show this spring, and transition to a weekly broadcast which will produce roughly 30 episodes per year. If that is true, it is quite simply — from a network perspective — one of the worst contracts in television history. Yes, CNN wanted to hire her, and yes she had top agents, but it’s still impossible to believe that NBC would have given so much for so little. A once-a-week show does not stand to have anywhere near the impact for MSNBC as Maddow’s current nightly program. The idea that the network would pay her nine figures for an occasional show and a Peacock documentary or two seems like a massive reach. One would think if MSNBC had any sense, the deal was a stopgap move. Anything to keep The Rachel Maddow Show on the air, because the network currently has nothing comparable with which to replace it. And just as they got Maddow to give them a few extra months until next spring, I am betting the current MSNBC plan is to try to get a few months out of her at a time, right through 2024 — if they have their way. Now, I believe that Rachel Maddow believes that she is ending her show as it currently exists in the next few months. Reports last year made clear that doing a nightly show has left her drained, and that she’s insisting on stepping back to spend more time with family. I wouldn’t even dismiss the possibility there is contractual language spelling out Maddow’s reduction in duties. But before the clock actually strikes midnight, I am betting the network will lean on Maddow to stay atop the 9 p.m. show in some way."
TOPICS: Rachel Maddow, MSNBC, The Rachel Maddow Show, Chris Cuomo, Cable News