It's been almost 12 years since Kathie Lee Gifford parted company with Regis Philbin after leaving the long-running talk show Live! But the two former colleagues reunited Thursday on the Today show and proved they haven't lost the humorous chemistry that made them a daytime hit for 15 years.
Regis joined Kathie Lee during her normal Today time slot, during which her 81-year-old mother Joanie was filling in for her regular co-host, Hoda Kotb.
Regis first wanted to know why Koda -- his nickname for Hoda -- was not there to meet him. "Let me ask you something? Where's Koda?" Kathie Lee explained that her co-host was called for jury duty and jokes to Regis: "Yeah, you wanna come back to work -- because this seat might be available soon."
Kathie Lee asks Regis if he's a bit relieved to be free from the grind of doing a daily show. "Oh yeah," he responds. But he also pointed out that he enjoyed doing the unrehearsed format of the show, which is rare today. "Because the show that we did, and I continued to do after you left, and I've always done, is all ad-lib. It's spontaneous, I don't have meetings with all these people, 'who are all these people? I want them out of here.' But it was all spontaneous, and I wanted to keep that element going."
During one of the interview's funnier moments, Regis addresses Kathie Lee's mother and suggests that her daughter is happier working with Hoda than she was with him. "Have you seen her with Koda? They're laughing, they're drinking wine, they're having the time of their life. With me, it was... (sits back with his arms folded looking bored). And I say to myself 'she wasn't happy, she's more happy with Koda.'"
Watch the clip to also hear Regis comment on whether he thinks Kelly Ripa is doing a good job since his departure.