UPDATE: The Soup host Joel McHale issued the following statement to EW about the end of the show: “I loved doing The Soup for all of these years (86 to be exact) but am excited to solely focus on my acting career now. Thanks to all who watched and thanks to Kim Kardashian’s ass for all that it’s done for me and my family.”
EARLIER: It’s official: E! has canned The Soup.
The network announced on Wednesday that it was ending the influential clip show that has skewered, ridiculed and otherwise mocked absurd moments in TV and pop culture after a 22-season run. Joel McHale will end his 12-year tenure as host — one in which he reinvigorated the franchise with his withering one-liners, which were directed even at the network’s other stars (see: the Kardashians) — on Dec. 18.
The show debuted in 1991 under the name Talk Soup with host Greg Kinnear, who would be succeeded by John Henson, Hal Sparks, and Aisha Tyler. It left the air in 2002 and re-emerged in 2004 with McHale at the helm and the new name The Soup.
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“We are incredibly proud of the long-running success of The Soup,” said E! EVP of Programming & Development Jeff Olde in a statement Wednesday. “The Soup has delivered countless laughs and unforgettable episodes, and we are grateful to the talented team’s fearless wit and clever approach week after week. Joel took the show to new heights for more than a decade, and his irreverent humor and unique brand of comedy as captured so perfectly on The Soup will be missed.”
New Soup episodes will air Fridays at 10 p.m. ET, leading up to the finale on Dec. 18 at 10 p.m., and these installments will revisit the show’s most iconic moments (probably including Chicken Tetrazzini and Dunkadooball) over the last decades.
McHale, who signed a deal with E! last year, to host The Soup through 2016, has seen his star has risen over the years: He has been a key cast member of Community and has emerged as a go-to host in Hollywood and beyond (ESPYs, the Spirit Awards, White House Correspondents’ Dinner). McHale next appears in a guest arc on Fox’s reboot of The X-Files.
Every variety of celebrity has popped on the show to participate in silly bits, including Norman Reedus, Tyra Banks, Joe Manganiello, Jon Cryer, Joe Jonas, Adam Scott, Aaron Paul, Gabourey Sidibe, Larry King, Kelly Ripa, Allison Janney, Tyra Banks, Martha Stewart, Chevy Chase, Sean Combs, Eminem, Demi Lovato, Anderson Cooper, Shaquille O’Neal, Joan Rivers, and Jack Black.