'The Talk': Aisha Tyler Bids Farewell to CBS Daytime Show
The co-host announced in June that she would be leaving at the end of the current season, which wrapped up Friday.
It was an emotional Friday on CBS' The Talk as Aisha Tyler made her last appearance as a co-host on the daytime show.
Tyler, who announced in June that she'd leave the show at the end of its seventh season, and fellow co-hosts Julie Chen, Sheryl Underwood, Sara Gilbert and Sharon Osbourne all sipped champagne and shared memories of working together for six seasons (Tyler joined the show in season two), with Tyler, Gilbert and Underwood all visibly emotional. Tyler, in particular, was crying as her co-hosts praised her and told her how much they'd miss her.
Before they went around the table, Chen revealed that Tyler gave her co-hosts a gift at their morning meeting on Friday: matching bracelets that were engraved with, "Fuck with one of us, you fuck with all of us."
"I probably couldn't have persuaded you all to get matching tattoos, so this was the next best thing," said Tyler. "When I wear it, I'll think of the love and support I felt at this table every day."
The ladies then took turns sharing their memories of working with Tyler, accompanied by clips of those moments, and saying a few words about her.
Underwood made a point of saying that her time with Tyler showed that "two sisters can be on TV and get along and not fight," praising her co-host while claiming that, as women and as comedians, people want to pit them against each other.
"You have made me a better comic, a better woman. You've made it easier for me to be at this table and represent our people," said Underwood. "You've showed class, grace, style, articulation. You are a true example for others to follow. I couldn't have done this without you."
Gilbert — who remembered how enthusiastic Tyler was when Gilbert announced her pregnancy on the show — called Tyler "such an inspiring person and friend," who's "not afraid to change your life."
Osbourne called out critics who claimed there was a negative reason for Tyler's departure, like that the co-hosts weren't getting along, and said those people could "keep scraping because there's nothing there."
"You have the best work ethic of anyone I've worked with," said Osbourne. "I admire your freedom and your bravery. The world's just waiting for you, missus. And you're going to do great things. We're going to talk about it here."
Tyler announced in June that she'd simply become too busy to continue her job on the daytime talk show, between three other TV shows and launching another career as a director, which she realized she wanted to devote more attention to.
In addition to The Talk, Tyler is also a series regular on CBS' Criminal Minds, hosts Whose Line Is It Anyway? and lends her voice to Archer.
Tyler also recently directed her first feature film, the dramatic thriller Axis, about a drug addict trying to save his relationships and turn his life around. She took the film to multiple festivals, including the Newport Beach Film Festival, where the title was honored.
Through that experience, Tyler said in June, she realized directing was what she "wanted to do and put [her] life into" and that there was no way she could continue her seven-days-a-week schedule, co-host a daytime talk show and be a director.
On Friday's episode of The Talk, Chen said that Tyler "raised [her] game" and had been a frequent source of support to her co-host.
"I looked up to you like a big sister," said Chen, even though the two are close in age and Chen is a few months older, she pointed out. "Someone who looks like you, you don't expect to have the personality you do," added Chen, calling Tyler "gorgeous," as well as the "funniest, bawdiest, smartest, hardest-working" person.
"You made me sit straighter because I wanted to be worthy of sitting at your left," said Chen.
"I have sat next to you during some of the hardest times of your adult life," added Chen, referencing Tyler going through a divorce and a struggle with infertility.
She recalled how Tyler had often reached over her hand to comfort Chen during moments when she could see that her colleague couldn't keep it together.
And Chen returned the affection on Friday, giving Tyler a hug and a quick kiss on the lips.
Tyler later introduced guest Issa Rae, and the show played a clip reel of some of the co-host's most memorable times on the daytime talk show, including funny moments, talking about her divorce and her departure announcement.
Her co-hosts also gave her a standing ovation at one point.
Tyler was the last to speak, taking a few minutes at the end of the show to talk about what a familylike environment the show has provided for her.
"The treasure of this show is my friendships with you guys. That is something that I never could have expected when I walked in the door here, but I do remember that first day, and that first week when I was here, how special it felt and comfortable it felt. I knew this could be a home, but never imagined in a million years that it would be this magical of a place," Tyler said in part. "The thing that I'll take with me is how all of you made me every day want to be a better woman and a better friend and a better person. … You four made me brave. … Your bravery made me a braver woman. … This has not been a job for me; this has been a family. … I'm so blessed and so grateful for this place and for you guys and for your unvarnished and unmitigated love. I'm changed because of you. I'm changed because of this place. … I hope when people watch this show, that people see friendships that are honest and true and that they can model their own lives off of. … I can't wait to see you guys continue to raise the bar on daytime television. This is the best show on daytime television. … I gained and lost a hundred things in these six years, but the thing that I gained was extraordinary friendships."
In a final surprise, Tyler's co-hosts sent her off with some directing paraphernalia, including a director's chair, slate and megaphone.
The co-hosts shared a group hug at the end of the show.