MSNBC’s Alex Wagner reminisces with childhood friend Chris Hayes during the premiere of “Alex Wagner Tonight” Tuesday.
“We were children together and now we’re grey-haired television anchors,” said Wagner, who made her debut in Rachel Maddow’s former slot. “Look ma, we did it, no hands,” she continued, referencing the 2010 Roscoe Dash and Waka Flocka Flame song.
Wagner, who previously co-hosted Showtime’s “The Circus,” was slated to take over the 9 p.m. slot as Maddow shifts to just once a week, on Mondays.
“Do the people at home know we’ve known each other for 25 years?” Hayes asked as Wagner’s show opened. “We were children together.”
“I can’t think of anyone better to do this than you,” he said, expressing his admiration for his longtime friend. “I can’t think of anyone better prepared to do it.”
Hayes noted that on the first day of his show he was “a wreck, barely breathing” with a high BPM, while Wagner remained “cool” leading up to her show’s debut. “You say that and I’m gonna pass out in like one minute,” Wagner joked.
“It feels so right that I get to take the reins from you, my friend for so many years,” Wagner said. “I’m so honored to share the stage with you and thank you for everything.”
“Alright, I’m gonna go watch you now,” Hayes responded as Wagner transitioned to introduce her show.
Wagner also noted that she has been a longtime viewer of “The Rachel Maddow Show” and hopes to “live up to the incredibly high standard she has set.”
In June, MSNBC announced that Wagner would take over the 9 p.m. slot after Maddow scaled back hosting her show to once a week. “Alex Wagner Tonight” will now premiere every night, Tuesday through Friday at 9 p.m.
Wagner, who previously worked at MSNBC and hosted the show “Now with Alex Wagner” from 2011-2015, tweeted that she was “absolutely thrilled and honored and generally upside down with excitement to come back home to @MSNBC.”