Joy Behar’s extended absence from The View has finally been explained. Well, kind of.
It has now been five episodes since we last saw Behar take a seat with the hosts of the daytime TV talk show. But up until recently, there had been very little mention of her and absolutely no reason given. Of course, the missing panelist has some fans worried because she has been a staple on the series since her start in 1997.
On Thursday, However, Whoopi Goldberg finally acknowledged her missing castmate when she welcomed that day’s guest hosts, Juju Chang, Alyssa Farah Griffin, and Chelsea Clinton. But the mention only came as Goldberg shared why Sara Haines was also out for the day.
“Sara’s still out with COVID,” she began. “Joy does not have COVID. She’s getting over something else, the flu, or maybe she’s pregnant, I don’t know.”
While it’s unlikely that the 79-year-old series regular has decided to expand the Behar bloodline, the sarcastic nudge does suggest that the host is not missing for any serious reasons. And though the comment didn’t exactly confirm anything, it does sound like the panelist has just been using some sick days.
‘The View’ Hosts Have Been Out Since Returning From the Bahamas
The former comedian’s break began on July 11th. That installment was the first to see the all-woman panel back on set after celebrating the show’s milestone 25th anniversary in paradise. That was also the day that Goldberg confirmed Haines’ diagnosis.
“Welcome to The View,” Goldberg said as the episode opened. “We are back here at home because we was gone for a little while. We was in The Bahamas.”
Following the greeting, Goldberg sent well-wishes to her ill friend and also noted the obvious fact that Behar was not on stage.
“We have to tell you, Sara is out with COVID. We want her to get well soon,” she continued. “Joy does not have COVID, but she’s not in today. She’s taking the day off.”
However, thinking that Behar was only “taking the day off,” fans were only concerned about Haines’ heath.
“Damn, Sara has COVID? Get well soon Sara!” one fan wrote on social media. “Sara’s off with COVID. Sorry to hear,” said another. “Hope she gets better, but I know she will.”
The news of Sara Haines’ illness marks the first big COVID-related hiatus for the team. Last year, Sunny Hosting and Ana Navarro were briefly absent due to positive tests. But it was later discovered that the co-hosts had gotten false positives.