The Year: TV Transitions

Part 7 of Katie Couric's special looking back at 2011.
8:06 | 12/15/11

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Transcript for The Year: TV Transitions
-- is June 1 word sums up -- And its transition. -- it's Friday November and titans of TV signing off. To at least one calamity of the situation comedy carrying on -- Timed sit -- -- -- as bases in Haines. -- -- You have Steve Carell the office my own thing and there -- the early today show I would -- the figure talent. Departures at any argument -- -- -- began with a surprise announcement this will be my last year on this show. On January 18 how many maestro Regis Philbin announced that after when he hears a co host -- life. You would be Levy. Why do you think this is the right. It just felt right contract. -- up and little else we can do with the show. Want to try as a matter fact -- like to try something a little bit different. Thank you -- for sharing this -- -- and in the -- equally mammoth back and made the -- daytime Oprah Winfrey. Five years thank you America and make you so much. Over had the biggest impact and we need the biggest fall -- -- whose names I will never know. I learned what -- -- to go this -- cable network all around you know. -- -- She's disappointed in the performance. Her whole network. I think it's humbling. Besides she needs to do something really really good. I know show and she's. Totally capable of doing it. The curtain also came down on Erica Kane. I need you. -- -- -- -- give a damn what you need. In September All My Children became the latest in a long string of daytime soaps to head off into the sunset. Steve using them. She -- became a phenomenon because of a lot of housewives at all in his previous generation that really was a -- -- for all those years. You and take back right now these days -- -- housewives aren't watching TV. There are on the he's real housewives everybody wants to be on TV and nobody seems to have any talent to do it from Atlanta -- out there. -- Beverly Hills company evening and I -- my. Our audiences seemingly couldn't get enough of the -- when he. Healthy lifestyles of the real housewives. Franchise which -- as many as six feet nine installments on -- this year. And if that's not enough there were two more -- is real. And happens. While it would be. Nice to think that this is all good clean fire and there's a real dark side to this as well in -- not long after Beverly Hills housewife Taylor Armstrong filed for divorce from her husband Russell. Citing physical and verbal abuse. He committed suicide. -- real housewives of Beverly Hills husband found -- but this is what's interesting. The show still -- as scheduled at the regularly scheduled premiere today. They didn't stop. Why do you bring that -- cringe worthy or -- only. Love them or -- them it looks like reality shows are here for the long haul. With scripted television. You have to hire really talented writers think up what would crazy people do. In reality TV -- just -- crazy people and film what they do. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- On MTV Jersey Shore continued its trend of filming everywhere but the Jersey Shore yeah. Sign me in the protest was supposed to be just look at how fish out of water these guys -- -- -- be in Italy and may be they -- -- -- -- -- Instead it was almost as though they went the other extreme and tried -- New Jersey and. But try as they might Snooki and the situation were not able to upstage the first. Family and react. The car -- -- what is with the national fascination. With keeping up with the car -- and I mean it's it's sort of fluffy diversion from the real problems that we're all dealing went I. Take issue with it because I have to share network with them and I'm. Embarrassed. Apart actually answered definitely -- for most reality TV and most TV in general has not gone far. In this year's appointment viewing mom Chris Jenner got a facelift so -- Fifteen year old Kendall got busted. It was at the pharmacy and pick up. -- birth control pills for Kendall. -- -- and Chris. -- -- Well enough about that. The fact that came his wedding was -- highest rated show ever. He says something about reality TV and the impact it's had on the public it really tells us that the sky's the limit. At least for now. But why stop at the sky when you can dance with the stars. I don't -- did this fall and found himself being judged more for his gender then his giant -- And you really believe that children are going to turn a trans gender from watching Chaz Bono. Did she has only lasted six weeks his message was heard loud and clear. I came on the show because I wanted to show America a different kind of man and I use that. Show and the twenty million viewers of that show to make a point make people aware that -- okay. They're not abnormal heart and you should continue to live your life the way you want to I applaud him and is -- Hear the songs on there. How he. American Idol seems to be in the best thing not just percent -- for American night. American Idol was reborn this year thanks to Steven Tyler Jennifer Lopez. Glass that they've gone. -- That's foods are. Jennifer Lopez's body have fun a look at some hot different -- especially you know. And I never know what they're gonna say what's where there's -- gonna -- -- -- -- Matches and that doesn't see what -- who would have thought that it would create a completely bizarre. And actually successful kind of history yes yes yeah. -- Shed no tears for the perfectly confident signing Howell. Heavily -- X-Factor. -- -- one million viewers. Never had to do you think people watching what it is successful you are truly did. So maybe we shouldn't believe everything Simon Says. Has the normally -- -- gone all soft on us. -- -- one of these best audition diet. His own best. Interest to be as critical as he ever -- but -- little nurturing as well and that nurturing side of Simon is a whole new thing. -- -- teens -- comment 2011. Reality shows didn't tell us but there's always next year.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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