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Natalie Morales Debuts on ‘Marriage Ref’

morales_ref_2-28.jpgNBC News’ Natalie Morales, the “Today” show’s national correspondent and third-hour co-anchor, made her first appearance on NBC’s new “Marriage Ref” last night.

“Marriage Ref” is a new Jerry Seinfeld-produced reality show where a panel of celebrity judges weigh in on a married couple’s disagreements. Morales serves under the title “Just the Facts Ma’am,” where she provides oddball factoid information.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette writes today, “‘Marriage Ref’ is a cute enough show but is it really necessary to drag the NBC News brand through the mindless entertainment?” Entertainment Weekly’s Ken Tucker writes, “Far from being dismayed that a TV-news person would agree to sit onstage trolling Google for factoids about how using a stripper pole ‘burns 250 calories an hour,’ I applaud Morales for showing both a sense of humor and the simple truth about TV-news readers — i.e., these people aren’t exactly investigative journalists.”

NBC tells us Morales will be a regular on the comedy show and that her participation “was vetted and approved by NBC News, and it has no effect on her role as an anchor and correspondent for NBC News.”

NBC premiered the new show at 10:30pm last night following the first part of its Olympic Closing Ceremonies coverage.

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