‘Today’ tweaks teases again, livens up anchor area

After making some adjustments to the top of the show back in August 2022, NBC’sToday” has tweaked various elements of the early moments of the broadcast starting Sept. 26, 2022 — as well as bringing in some new decorative items to home base.

The show continues the practice that began Aug. 15, 2022, of having the show’s two co-anchors appear on camera immediately when the broadcast hits the air.

The LED graphic fed the video ribbon above the corner of Studio 1A that’s used as the anchor desk home base has lost most of its multicolored look in favor of a more subtle and elegant deeper blue with an orange line along the top.

Similarly, the graphic on the LED panel between the anchors has been modified to match the header.

In addition, the network also brought in a collection of off-white potted plants that sit atop the white credenza with color-changing bands that rings this part of the studio.

The plants appear to be in four identical sets of planters, including two that come with wooded stands and descend symmetrically from tallest to shortest, radiating out from either side of the vertical LED panel.

The blooms are mostly off-whites and pastels, though the farthest one out from camera center appears to be more of a deep green. 

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One of the vessels on each side also features a narrower bottom portion while the remaining two are more traditional shapes, but two of them sit inside of the stands.

These plants appear both in two-shots and one-shots from the anchor desk.

The addition of the plants brings another layer of dimension to the famous Studio 1A window view, adding more texture to the midpoint of the background.

It perhaps comes at a key time — as there is less and less daylight as fall approaches, the action outside the windows will become less discernible apart from lights from vehicles, traffic signals and decorative elements on the plaza.

The plants also tend to, in most camera shots, partially cover the branded crowd control barriers set up outside of the studio, which could help the crowds positioned behind them to become more prominent on-screen.

In addition to these updates, there is also an updated animated wipe that runs just after the anchors tease the top headline before transitioning into the fullscreen teases. 

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This design drops the off-axis stacked version of the “Today” logo in favor of a horizontal version in a blue polygon shape that more closely resembles the bug box the show has used in the lower right corner of the screen since the show last redesigned its graphics package in 2021.

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The wipe also incorporates angled elements that appear to be more closely tied to the look of the rest of the package, whereas the old transitional animation had some subtle differences.

Originally, the switch to having talent appear on screen immediately, something that is notably done at rival “Good Morning America,” was meant to add “energy” to the show right from the top, according to NBC sources.

A source told NewscastStudio that it was initially meant as an “experiment” for the summer months. There’s been no word if it’s sticking around, but it’s lasted over a month now and the show appears to be iterating off it it, a sign that it might become permanent. 

With the addition of the plants, there is also the possibility that the colors and species depicted in the plants could change over the course of the year, giving the show the ability to bring festive and seasonal looks, such as oranges, reds and golds as leaves begin to change in most of the U.S.

For now, the off-whites and pale shades felt a bit more like a winter colorscape, but it also could have been selected as simply a background element that’s subtle, unlikely to clash with talent wardrobe and not be overly distracting on air. 

The show’s set, which it shares with “NBC Nightly News,” also features glossy white elements throughout. These were added during a September 2021 update.

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When “Today” traveled to Tokyo for coverage of the delayed 2020 Olympics in 2021, its outdoor studio featured a collection of real, native bonsai plants.

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