Where 'Grease' Meets 'Old Town Road': Talk Shows Show Off Their Best Halloween Costumes

Kelly Ripa and Ryan Seacrest, Halloween
Courtesy Photo

Kelly Ripa and Ryan Seacrest dresses up for Halloween on Live with Kelly and Ryan.

ABC's Good Morning America and NBC's Today were hopelessly devoted to Halloween on Thursday, with hosts on both of the rival morning shows dressed up as different versions of Olivia Newton-John.

GMA's Ginger Zee provided a roller-skating take on the singer on the ABC morning show, while a few blocks away Today's Savannah Guthrie took to Rockefeller Plaza as Newton-John's Sandy character from Grease, complete with Carson Daly as John Travolta's version of Danny.

Newton-John even recorded video messages commenting on Zee and Guthrie's costumes, which aired on GMA and Today, respectively.

Indeed, Travolta was also a popular choice, of sorts, with Today's Hoda Kotb's also dressing as his Saturday Night Fever character.

While Today had a dance theme for its annual costumed extravaganza, GMA also got its groove on with a '70s-inspired collection of costumes.

Pop culture continued to play a large role in Thursday's costumes with the hosts continuing to refrain from political looks that made appearances in years past. While musicians were present across both GMA and TodayLive With Kelly and Ryan focused mostly on movie, TV show and Internet sensations in the "Viral Edition" of their annual "Best Halloween Show Ever."

Read on to see how more of this year's broadcast network talk show hosts got into the Halloween spirit.

Good Morning America

The ABC morning show adopted a '70s disco theme for this year's costumes, transforming its Times Square studio into "Studio44."

Robin Roberts dressed as Donna Summer, with Michael Strahan, Whit Johnson and Gio Benitez taking on The Bee Gees and Lara Spencer channeling Liza Minnelli. In addition to Zee's Olivia Newton-John, Sara Haines and Amy Robach joined forces as Sonny and Cher, respectively, and Sam Champion dressed as one of the members of the Village People.

George Stephanopoulos served as the disco's DJ.


NBC's morning-show Halloween celebration was titled "Everybody Dance Today," continuing the musical theme. In addition to Guthrie and Daly's Grease garb and Kotb's Saturday Night Fever ensemble, Jenna Bush Hager and Willie Geist had the time of their lives as Baby and Johnny from Dirty Dancing, even performing the film's memorable lift; Craig Melvin and Al Roker dressed as Will Smith and Alfonso Ribeiro's Carlton Banks, respectively, from Fresh Prince of Bel-Air; Sheinelle Jones dressed as a Rhythm Nation-era Janet Jackson, showing off some impressive dance moves and receiving a message from the real Jackson thanking Jones for thinking of her; Dylan Dreyer recreated Julia Louis-Dreyfus' "little kicks" Elaine dance from Seinfeld and Peter Alexander dressed as Kevin Bacon's Footloose character.


Live With Kelly and Ryan

The syndicated morning show took on "pop culture's biggest viral moments," as host Ryan Seacrest explained at the top of the show. He and Ripa started the hour-long, multi-costume celebration with a pre-taped video inspired by Lil Nas X's hit song "Old Town Road." Donning Western attire, Ripa and Seacrest rode horses down the street past costumed onlookers as well as fellow hosts Jimmy Fallon and Jimmy Kimmel, inserted via green screen.

After stopping to sing some of the song and dance, the action moved inside with a group of Western dancers as Ripa and Seacrest took the stage wearing sparklier Western ensembles, complete with sequins and fringe. Ripa was dressed in black while Seacrest sported a pinkish red ensemble with a white cowboy hat and glasses.

Occasionally slipping in and out of their Western accents, which Ripa joked at one point were "coming and going like the wind," the pair previewed their viral-themed show, with Ripa telling viewers not to change the channel.

"What Gelman will pull off is truly awe-inspiring/nausea-inducing," she teased of a future costume executive producer Michael Gelman would wear.

They also teased that their final costumes, to preside over the show's annual costume contest, would be the No. 1 most requested costume from home viewers, which Ripa said she wasn't sure how she feels about. But, Seacrest added, they'll wear it nonetheless.

In a pre-taped segment hosted by YouTube stars Rhett & Link, Ripa, Seacrest, Gelman and executive-in-charge Art Moore dressed as characters from beloved scary movies, with a 2019 YouTube twist.

Ripa portrayed an "Ice Bucket Challenge" version of Carrie, from the horror film of the same name. (Carrie later made an appearance on ABC's The View as the hosts donned Stephen King-inspired costumes.)

And she took on The Exorcist and dressed as Silence of the Lambs' Hannibal Lecter, hosting a food-centric video, with guest/snack Moore. She also dressed as Drew Barrymore's Scream character and recreated the film's opening scene, but with the masked caller doing the whisper challenge, making it difficult to hear what he was saying. At one point, Ripa said she couldn't tell if he was saying "laurel" or "yanny," touching on the recent viral audio clip.

Seacrest, meanwhile, made an appearance as It villain Pennywise, hosting a makeup tutorial, in which he transforms into Joaquin Phoenix's Joker, with blue paint around his eyes, green hair and all. (Pennywise also made a later appearance on The View.)

After the commercial break, the hosts, Gelman, Moore and guest Kal Penn donned colorful shark outfits to celebrate "Baby Shark," noting that even the World Series champion Washington Nationals, who just secured the title last night, were bitten by the catchy song.

After interviewing Penn, the hosts returned from another commercial to recreate Katy Perry and Taylor Swift's reunion photo, dressed as a burger and fries, respectively, just as the musicians did in the memorable scene from Swift's "You Need to Calm Down" video. Also appearing during the segment were Gelman as Jennifer Lopez in her famous green Versace dress, which she sported again this year in a headline-making runway walk, and Moore as an Instagram-famous egg.

The Live team also took on the Cats trailer going viral, dressing as rhyming sequel subjects (bats, rats and gnats) and singing versions of "Memory" inspired by their subjects. 

They also recreated the black-and-white Addams Family TV show, with a Property Brothers renovation twist, with Ripa dressing as Morticia, husband Mark Consuelos dressing as Gomez, Moore as Fester and Seacrest as Pugsley to Ripa's Wednesday.

Ripa and Seacrest's final costumes, respectively, were Barbie and Ken dolls, in their boxes. When they emerged from their containers, the hosts were wearing roller skates and short shorts.  

The View

The View's costumes were all inspired by the work of author Stephen King for what the ABC daytime show called "The Viewing."

All of the co-hosts, along with surprise guest Anthony Scaramucci, participated in a scary, King-inspired intro, complete with a "Baby Shark" cameo, in which Meghan McCain channeled Jack Nicholson's Shining character and broke through a door with an ax.

Sunny Hostin dressed as It's Pennywise, whose distinctive teeth made it difficult for her to talk. Hostin, who's scared of clowns, said she thought the costume would help her face her fears but it didn't work out that way.

"I scared myself when I looked in the mirror," she said.

Abby Huntsman dressed as Carrie, from the film of the same name, covered in blood.

Moderator Whoopi Goldberg sported an elaborate feline costume as Church the cat who came back from the dead in Pet Sematary. Goldberg even pointed out her own litter box, which she wiped her feet in, and scratching post.

McCain and Joy Behar poked fun at their rumored rift by dressing as the twin girls from The Shining, with Behar pulling McCain close and proclaiming that they're "a team."

"Depending on whether you're a Democrat coming on the show or a Republican coming on the show," McCain said, "Joy or I are your worst nightmare."

The pair also got political in the intro with a voiceover declaring that they'd show people a world where Trump is president forever.

The Talk

CBS' The Talk continued its tradition of music-inspired costumes with its fifth annual "Rocktober Lip Sync War." For this year's edition, Marie Osmond recreated Gwen Stefani's "Sweet Escape" music video; Sharon Osbourne transformed into Stevie Nicks to perform "Stand Back," saying she would love for Nicks to duet with Ozzy Osbourne; Eve told viewers they "better work" in her performance of RuPaul's 1992 song 'Supermodel"; Carrie Ann Inaba honored her fellow Fly Girl Jennifer Lopez with a medley of the singer-actress' "Get Right" and "Let's Get Loud" (Lopez's second appearance of the day); and Sheryl Underwood transformed into Barry White, beard and all, for a rendition of "You're the First, The Last, My Everything."

Underwood said she hoped that White's family and fans appreciated her performance.

StefaniNicks and RuPaul all sent in messages of support for the hosts who dressed as them.

The Ellen DeGeneres Show

Sporting a black sequined ensemble and fishnet stockings, Ellen DeGeneres dressed as Cardi B's Hustlers character, calling herself Cardi E.

"E is for Ellen. It's also my bra size," DeGeneres said, one of a number of references to her costume's ample chest.

"Every year I'm forced to dress up in a costume, and every year they try to make it sexier than the year before," DeGeneres said. "I'll know it's time to stop doing the show when they send me out in two coasters and a dinner napkin. Honestly, it's amazing that I can be wearing so little and yet sweating so much. It feels like I'm smothered in a sexy futon or something."

As DeGeneres delivered a couple of versions of the rapper's "Okurrr," Cardi B herself walked out and gave DeGeneres some twerking and lap-dancing tips.

Cardi B also felt DeGeneres' fake breasts, commenting, "I like that yours are softer than mine. I should be mad at my doctor." 

This article originally appeared on The Hollywood Reporter.