MSNBC has solidified the network’s replacement for the departing Dylan Ratigan show. The Cycle, which debuts Monday, features a permanent cast of four: Conservative commentator S.E. Cupp, author and pundit Touré, Salon writer Steve Kornacki and former congressional candidate Krystal Ball. All four will appear every day, taking turns facilitating discussion. MSNBC revealed specifics on the show to the Huffington Post. Exec producer Steve Friedman and the four co-hosts jokingly begged to differ with suggestions that The Cycle format seems derivative of Fox News Channel’s The Five. “The concept of an ensemble show is extraordinarily old,” said Touré. The intent for The Cycle is that it come across as something like a dinner party with freewheeling conversations about the news — but never degenerating into partisan brawling.
Reacting to criticism that MSNBC was veering too far away from breaking news, Friedman said “Cable television is programs about the news. It’s no longer the news. Nobody turns on to find out what happens, because they already know from you guys. What people are interested in is listening and watching people give their take.”