Mariette Hartley: starting today off right

Though Mariette Hartley rose to sudden fame in the unlikely vehicle of Polaroid commercials, the lady has achieved sufficient recognition in recent months to warrant consideration as a possible replacement for Jane Pauley in the early morning news show Today.

Indeed, many consider Mariette as potentially the strongest member of the Today team. For instance, the show's main news reporter, Tom Brokaw, possesses a journalistic seriousness that borders on the pompous and self-important, while the show's new weatherman, Willard Scott, tries to woo TV audiences by wearing an oversized flower-type decoration in his lapel and maintaining a patter of happy talk to match.

In her recent try-out, Mariette was the show's only bright spot with her combination of intelligence, charm and wit. To weatherman Scott, she cracked, "Oh go home and eat your flower, Willie." When a guest discussing a sex and marriage survey reported that the women indicated they looked for quality rather than quantity in sex and that one in five had had extra-marital affairs, Mariette quipped "Is this for quality or quantity?"

Without any doubt, Mariette is for quality, a fact that could not be lost on NBC, who are desperate to beat their ABC competitor, Good Morning America in the ratings game!

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