'America's Funniest Home Videos' rerun beats Megyn Kelly's Alex Jones interview

Megyn Kelly

Megyn Kelly

In spite of the significant amount of advance news coverage of the Alex Jones interview on this week's edition of "Sunday Night with Megyn Kelly" on NBC, the show was not a success with viewers.

It probably doesn't come as a great surprise that Fox News commentator Sean Hannity is defending conspiracy theorist Alex Jones over his former colleague Megyn Kelly, whose interview of the Infowars creator has caused a furor of debate over the past few weeks.

Jones, founder of the website Infowars, has questioned what he calls the "official story" of Sandy Hook and suggested a political cover-up took place. But he added that he remained skeptical after he "watched the footage" of children leaving the building.

The decision to interview Jones was met with criticism from those arguing a mainstream outlet like NBC should not give a platform to a unsafe conspiracy theorist - but Kelly's tough questioning of Jones and some selective editing drew plaudits from skeptics who assumed Kelly would grant the Infowars host a puff piece. AFHV boasted an audience of 3.7 million viewers to Ms. Kelly's 3.5 million. NBC News went aggressively on the defense, trotting out elder statesman Tom Brokaw to read an essay about the need to interview characters like Jones, due to the reach of their "poisonous claims". But here's the thing: "Alex Jones isn't going away", Kelly said at the beginning of the NBC News interview.

The program took a nosedive in comparison to Kelly's debut on June 4, which featured an interview with Russian president Vladimir Putin. In an internal memo obtained by The Associated Press, NBC Connecticut staff members were told station executives made the decision after listening to concerns from employees, Sandy Hook families and viewers and considering "the deep emotions from the wounds of that day that have yet to heal". Lawyers representing 12 people who lost loved ones in the Sandy Hook massacre wrote to the network and asked them not to air the interview. But even a masterclass in dress-down interviews wouldn't undo the damage already done by NBC News and Kelly.

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — The publicity and uproar in the days before Sunday's broadcast of Megyn Kelly's interview with conspiracy theorist Alex Jones didn't translate into ratings.

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