TODAY celebrated its 25th anniversary of when the NBC morning show moved into Studio 1A in New York City, sharing all kinds of archived footage that spanned the quarter-century — but viewers couldn't help but notice that disgraced longtime anchor Matt Lauer had been scrubbed from the show's image completely.
Included in the footage were TODAY anchors Al Roker, Savannah Guthrie, Carson Daly, Craig Melvin, Hoda Kotb and Jenna Bush, with no mention of Lauer, who was fired by the network toward the end of 2017 for "inappropriate sexual behavior."
Lauer worked on the show for nearly 25 years before he was fired. Allegations against him ranged from sexual assault, lewd comments, exposing his genitalia to co-workers and more.
It’s been exactly 25 years since TODAY opened its window to the world, changing the way millions of Americans begin their day.
Take a look back at how it all began at Studio 1A. pic.twitter.com/z5Jz5Gkga2— TODAY (@TODAYshow) June 20, 2019
The 25th-anniversary celebration looked back on concerts, on-air marriage proposals, pregnancy announcements and other events that happened at the TODAY show studio in Rockefeller Center over the years.
Critics of the clip accused TODAY of revisionism but were met with stern rebuttal by those who say Lauer's years of service did not merit mention because of the offenses. Some also expressed shock that there would be any objection to Lauer being skipped over in the first place.
Erasing history guys? There was a “Matt Lauer” there for a couple of years.— Robin (@robinsnest390) June 20, 2019
Glad I'm not the only one disappointed that you left Matt Lauer out in your look back at 25 years on the Plaza. He deserved to lose his job BUT you can't erase the huge role he played on "Today" during his 20+ years doing the news then hosting. You can't rewrite history, @nbc.— (((Stacey))) (@Fab4tune) June 20, 2019
Wow. @TODAYshow is celebrating 25 years @ Studio 1A & decided not to include 1 clip of Matt Lauer. He was a huge contributor to the show for as long as I watched; not Carson, not Savannah. Yes, what Matt did was wrong but him, Katie & Al helped build Today!! *turns channel*— Nikki OW (@nikki_wo) June 20, 2019
@SavannahGuthrie While I understand this is a time for celebration it feels slightly insincere that Matt Lauer has been completely written out of the narrative. Denying or ignoring his presence feels insincere and possibly damaging to his victims who deserve to be remembered.— Sarah Moran (@sarahfclif) June 20, 2019
To all the ppl outraged that Matt Lauer wasn’t in the montage: pic.twitter.com/rFt6lfurAz— AK47_80 (@AK47_80) June 20, 2019
Imagine if some people were as outraged about Matt Lauer being a sexual predator as they are about him being excluded from a stupid fucking montage.— The Volatile Mermaid (@OhNoSheTwitnt) June 20, 2019
"Matt Lauer" is where he deserves to be. In the shadows. Let him stay there. pic.twitter.com/OQgmteRktJ— CADUCEUS1902 (@CADUCEUS1902) June 20, 2019
Shout out to the @TODAYshow editors for putting together an impressive piece celebrating 25 Years of Studio 1A without any footage Matt Lauer. You all are the real MVPs— Paulette Simone (@PSHowISeeIt) June 20, 2019
NBC viewers also noticed Lauer's glaring absence last year during the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, with many taking to Twitter to joke, "Wait, where's Matt Lauer?!"
Several made it clear they weren't missing the former anchor. "I gotta say this is the best Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade in recent memory because I don't have to sit through Matt Lauer's bulls—," one Twitter user cracked at the time.
Lauer was fired over an internal complaint in 2017, although several more allegations of abuse later surfaced against him. He has apologized for his actions at NBC but denied certain "aspects" of the claims against him.
He reportedly reached a $20 million divorce settlement with wife Annette Roque, in which they will share custody of their three children. The two were married for 20 years.