Sheryl Underwood opened the show by teasing that its new permanent co-host has been doing "some serious training" for his new gig, before cutting to a pre-taped video of O'Connell working out and pumping himself up as he made his way to the studio.
Underwood, Amanda Kloots and Elaine Welteroth all stood to welcome their new co-host to the stage, as he ran out with flowers for each of them.
"It's really exciting. First of all, I want to say, you ladies have been so welcoming to me. I came here as a guest months ago, and just from the moment I walked in, you're just gracious, you're kind, you're fun, and it worked," O'Connell said. "And here we are. And we're going to have a lot of fun, we really are."
"We're so lucky to have you, Jerry, we really are," Welteroth said, with Kloots emphatically agreeing.
"I just love having you on set every day," Kloots told O'Connell. "You bring such an amazing energy to the studio. I learn from you every day. You are an incredible host. We are so lucky to have you here."
O'Connell praised his co-hosts, as well as the show's producers and crew, as "amazing," adding that "it's a really special feeling around here."
"You add to that. You make everybody smile. You know names. You say good morning to everybody," Underwood told O'Connell, adding, "We talk, we laugh, we joke."
"But I'm going to tell you something, it's really a two-fer. We get you but get Rebecca, too, and the kids," Underwood said of O'Connell's wife, Rebecca Romijn, and their 12-year-old twins, Dolly and Charlie.
"I have to say while it is very exciting for me to be here and an honor, my wife is really excited. Typically, I'm an actor, I go do a job, my wife is like 'OK, go have fun, you do you,'" O'Connell said. "I was talking to my wife last night and said the big announcement is going to happen tomorrow. My wife was like, 'I'm really happy for you. This is going to be so much fun for you.'"
"I've never done this on like a real, permanent basis. I've done it temporarily here and there. But I like to have a good time," he continued. "The world is a crazy place. It's scary and it's been really scary. I like everyone else has been cooped up. This is the first time I haven't been in underwear in a year and a half. I am so excited to share that with you, ladies, and also with everybody watching. We're going to have a good time."
The women agreed, with Welteroth saying, "I can't wait to work with you every single day, Jerry... You bring so much joy. We just love working with you every single day. I can't wait for next season with you."
"It's an exciting time. It's something new," O'Connell said. "It's new and it's a change. Change is good. Change is good. You have to do things that scare you and shake it up a little bit."
The 47-year-old actor is the first full-time male co-host in the show's history, but is no stranger to viewers. He's guest-hosted The Talk on multiple occasions as well as other popular talk show programs like The Wendy Williams Show, and had his own late-night talk show on Bravo in 2018 called Bravo's Play by Play. Most recently, the multi-talented star voiced Commander Jack Ransom on the animated series Star Trek: Lower Decks.