‘Meet the Press’ showcases kaleidoscope of political spectrum in new look

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NBC News‘ “Meet the Press” broadcast Kristen Welker’s first show as moderator Sept. 17, 2023, while also introducing a new logo and graphics along with changes to the set and format of the program. 

The new logo, which was released back in August 2023, still features its distinctive angular letters, a theme that was carried through to the graphics package, which blends diagonal lines with kaleidoscopic effects. 

Both elements were prominent in the updated open, which features Welker previewing the stories of the day and previewing that Sunday’s panel members. 

The show did not feature any on-screen headlines for the Sept. 17 teases, which were devoted entirely to previewing Welker’s taped sit-down interview with Donald Trump.

As Welker read her voiceover, images flashed by on-screen using a variety of animated effects, including layouts featuring topical imagery dropped into a layout replicating the look of a kaleidoscope.

The kaleidoscopic theme could be seen as a nod to the myriad of angles and perspectives in politics, along with being a visual nod to Washington, D.C.’s distinctive street grid that involves angles streets that cut through a more traditional grid pattern. It’s also, more pessimistically, an homage to the illusions and “smoke and mirrors” used in politics. 

The D.C. street grid visual is also featured prominently in Studio N1, which continues to serve as the home of “Meet the Press” as well as on “Inside with Jen Psaki,” another politics-centric show on MSNBC that recently got elevated to a weekday timeslot.


The short portion just before the open runs that previews that day’s panel members also uses a take on the diagonal line motif with two triangular elements designed to look like stone columns and accented with brown and blue lines in the upper right and lower right corners of the screen.

Tucked into the arrow-like negative space formed by these elements is the panel member’s name and logo of his or her news organization. 

The open itself uses a variety of traditional imagery of Washington, D.C. landmarks in multiple unique ways, including additional takes on the kaleidoscopic-like effect. 

This includes a view of the Washington Monument’s obelisk shape realized as an eight-pointed star as well as various imagery from the U.S. Capitol segmented and rotating around the center of the screen. 

By combining views such as a straight on shot of the Speaker of the House’s chair with the coffered pattern from inside the Capitol Rotunda dome, the design also explores both similar and contrasting shapes, patterns and photos.

Another example of this, which is also used prominently on an on-set video wall during Welker’s open is the use of the presidential seal juxtaposed next to the Capitol Rotunda’s fresco and dome.

Both are circular, but the seal is a direct symbol of a specific person and office and typically a flatter element, while the Capitol dome and its Constantino Brumidi fresco part of a three-dimensional structure that depicts President George Washington in a revered manner that some interpret as him becoming a god — two very different takes on government and the perspective role of the president.

“Meet the Press” continues to use the “Pulse of Events” movement from John Williams’ “The Mission,” portions of which are also used for NBC News Special Reports. Actor Dennis Haysbert continues to provide the announce, with former moderator Chuck Todd’s name removed in favor of Welker’s.


The open also continues to acknowledge “MTP” as the “longest running show in television history.” 

At the top of the show, Welker stands next to a new circular desk with strong vertical gold-toned elements as its base with glass top placed over a simulated white marble circular slab that sits on an updated custom area rug with overlaid circles and a square.

Other video walls showcase an right-angle “elbow”-shaped background behind the boxed show logo and a loop of the working newsroom that sits next to the studio.

Welker’s primary background while seated is one of the video panels built into the gently-curved arches in Studio N1. She sits in front of a bright image of the Capitol’s west facade with a blue band interspersed with yellow diamonds with thick white outlines and a yellow block below. The show’s updated logo appears on the far left and far right and often appear on-camera on either side of Welker.

The diamonds, which are typically essentially squares rotated 45-degrees, have visual tie-ins to the mirrored kaleidoscope looks, the idea of shifting ideas and public opinion and a place for politicians to “square off” inside of. They also conjure memories of the show’s former graphics package, which included polygons created using diagonals set a variety of angles with facet glass effects added in.

The show also updated the simulated framed prints on the walls of the set with a combination of geometric and photographic backgrounds behind the show logo.

Another change to the hard scenery is the addition of a pleated gold-toned wall inside one of the arches camera right of the desk’s position.

This wall now features a similar vertical motif as the desk and also includes a faux white marble rectangular element with the NBC peacock and show logotype on it — and the gold tones match the D.C. map wall panel on the opposite side of the set that is positioned in front of the real windows overlooking the street.

The section with the show name is removable and for panel-based segments, becomes a camera blind to capture guests seated camera left of the desk.

At least two cameras are typically placed in the corner of the set to capture those seated camera right of the moderator chair and these continue to appear on-air in wide shots from time to time, just like they did during the Chuck Todd era. However, these appearances tend to be more subtle.

Another key change to the look of the show is more frequent use of a handheld camera, particularly during panel discussions. There are regular extended shots that move around the studio, including nearly all the way around the desk. These shots adjust based on who is talking, with the shot switching between wide and tighter shots focused on most of the table to specific clusters of people, respectively.

This approach emphasizes the dynamic and often fast-paced back-and-forth that can happen during a panel discussion between journalists and D.C. insiders.

“Meet the Press” also debuted a new new bug Sept. 17. Like most NBC News programs, the bug is animated and rotates between the NBC News logo and show logo. With the redesign, “MTP” now uses the updated NBC News logotype with NBC Tinker instead of Futura. 

The bug animates on a loop that includes a subtle radiating diamond effect, with its nods to a kaleidoscope’s faceted views, and flickering feathers on the show logo along with light gold diagonal elements that reveal the standalone NBC News logo, which also gets the radiating animated treatment. 

When it’s time to switch back to the show name, the “M,” “T” and “P” are emphasized briefly, showcasing the broadcast’s popular initialism. A similar effect can also be found in the open just before the full logo enters.

The bug can appear by itself on-screen or with a blue box behind it when lower third banners are used.

The updated L3 insert graphics feature a simple off-white rectangle with diagonal faded elements. There’s a blue line above and below the text area, which can be used for both headlines or for identifying a person on-screen. Subtle thin white accents are also used above and below the fullwidth bar.

Both the banner itself and text in it have animation effects that draw on the radiating diamond look.

Meanwhile, the weekday sister show to “MTP,” “Meet the Press Now” that streams on NBC News Now also switched over to the new logo and open.

Like before, it does not include an announcer and lower third insert banners, like most other programs on NBC News Now, follow the same basic layout, with just the show logo and colors shifting between programs.

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