The thirteenth season of “The Wendy Williams Show” premiered on Monday. However, eagle-eyed fans will have noticed one glaring absence. The show’s namesake and host, Wendy Williams was nowhere to be seen.

Instead of Williams’ familiar presence, viewers were treated to a four-person panel, featuring Bevy Smith, Elizabeth Wagmeister, Michael Yo and Devyn Simone. The hosts attempted to emulate Williams’ signature style by kicking off the episode with the usual “How you doin’?” aimed at the audience.

They did, however, have to address the elephant in the room. While none of the hosts made any comments about Williams’ health issues, Michael Yo did send out a sweet message to Williams.

Wendy, I know you’re watching right now, and on behalf of myself, our panel, your co-hosts, we love you and can’t wait to have you back in that purple chair.

The new season of the show was initially set to premiere on the 20th of September. However, the date had to be pushed back multiple times as a result of Williams’ ongoing health issues, including a breakthrough COVID case.

The show’s production company, Debmar-Mercury put out a statement saying that while Williams is making progress, she “is experiencing serious complications as a direct result of Graves’ Disease and her thyroid condition.” It is not yet clear when she will be returning to the show.

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Abhishek Kar

Abhishek Kar is a freelance writer and a full-time pop culture enthusiast from India. In his spare time, he likes to paint.

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