ABC Thrills Over Michelle Obama's Oscar Appearance: 'Straight Out of Argo'

Last week, ABC scored an exclusive "get." Barack and Michelle Obama appeared on Good Morning America to welcome back co-host Robin Roberts from a serious illness. On Tuesday, Roberts paid the White House back, fawning over the "trend-setting" First Lady and her "hot" bangs. The anchor asked not a single tough question during the two part, eight and a half minute segment.

Co-anchor George Stephanopoulos compared Mrs. Obama's appearance at the Oscars, Sunday, to the real mission in the movie Argo: Rescuing American hostages from Iran. He thrilled over the secretive appearance: "Producers go undercover to the White House in a move straight out of Argo." Elizabeth Vargas echoed, "It was like something out of Argo." The hostages in Iran faced death, not the revelation of a TV appearance. [See video below. MP3 audio here.]

The graphic laughably screamed, "Mission Michelle."

Roberts's first question made it clear that this would be an interview full of softballs. Regarding the President's second inaugural, she enthused, "It really seemed, Mrs. Obama, that you and the President and your family, this time around, really took in the moment. Was that the case?"

Later, the host moved on to the deeply pressing issue of the First Lady's hair. Gossiping to the ABC audience, she revealed, "I couldn't resist asking about her latest trend-setting move. Yep. Those new bangs. There's no hotter topic."

After the first segment, which totaled 4 minutes and 34 seconds, Roberts and Mrs. Obama came back for another four minutes to do a cooking story.

Back on February 20, the First Lady gushed over how exciting this segment would be: "And personally, I am looking forward to our interview together in a couple of days."

Roberts has a long history of fawning over the Obamas. On May 10, 2012, she lauded, "I'm getting chills" just thinking about the President's flip on gay marriage.

A transcript of the February 26 segment follows:


7am tease

GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: Mission, Michelle. The top secret operation revealed to get the First Lady to announce best picture at the Oscars. Producers go undercover to the White House in a move straight out of Argo. This morning, Robin's exclusive interview with the First Lady.

7:14

STEPHANOPOULOS: We're going now to turn to Robin's exclusive interview with First Lady Michelle Obama. All over the headlines this week, especially after that surprise appearance at the Oscars to announce the best picture. Robin sat down with her before heading to L.A. to talk about the First Lady's let's move campaign and a whole lot more, including how the president is handling a teenager in the White House.

JOHN ROBERTS: Please raise your right hand and repeat after me.

ROBIN ROBERTS: It really seemed, Mrs. Obama, that you and the President and your family, this time around, really took in the moment. Was that the case?

MICHELLE OBAMA: Absolutely. We made a conscious decision to take this in because four years ago, it was a whirlwind. So, this was one of those times where we had to just stop and breathe and appreciate all that we'd accomplished and all that was left to do.

ROBERTS: As President Obama begins his second term, gun violence has become an issue close to both the President and the First Lady. In January, Mrs. Obama attended the funeral of one, young victim in Chicago, gunned down just a week after performing at the inauguration.

OBAMA: Hadiya was an honor student. One of the things her mother said at this funeral, she said, "I did everything I was supposed to do." And she was absolutely right. She did everything she was supposed to do. She was standing in a park with her friends in a neighborhood blocks away from where my kids grew up, where our house is. And she was caught in the line of fire. I just don't want to keep disappointing our kids in this country. I want them to know that we put them first.

ROBERTS: Our country's children have long been the focus of Mrs. Obama's time in the White House. This is the third anniversary of her Let's Move campaign, taking on childhood obesity. What have you accomplished with Let's Move and what remains to be done?

OBAMA: When we started, there were a lot of people in this country who would have never thought that childhood obesity was a health crisis. But now, we're starting to see rates of obesity coming down like never before. This new initiative that we're announcing, the "my plate" recipe partnership, where we're collaborating with some of the top media companies in this country. And they are compiling and labeling and promoting recipes that meet the "my plate" guidelines.

ROBERTS: Now, before I let Mrs. Obama go, I couldn't resist asking about her latest trend-setting move. Yep. Those new bangs. There's no hotter topic.

OBAMA: Oh, what? What?

ROBERTS: No hotter topic, than your bangs.

OBAMA: Bangs? What bangs?

ROBERTS: You know, you forced me to go wigless. In December, my wonderful stylist picked out a wig for me. In December. You didn't debut this until January. Look at this picture.

[On-screen: A picture of Roberts win a wig looking similar to Michelle Obama.]

OBAMA: My goodness. That's cute.

ROBERTS: I know and I was going to do that. Everyone would have thought I was copying you when I came back.

OBAMA: Aww, well, you know what? Robin, you were so gorgeous. You are one of the women who can do whatever to your hair and you look great.

ROBERTS: Oh, well, thank you.

OBAMA: So, you can mix it up.

ROBERTS: That was December, the wig.

OBAMA: Okay. Robin had it first. Robin-- I'm following you.

ROBERTS: Not at all. But that's the spirit of everything. And when I think about your children, Malia's going to be 15 in July.

OBAMA: Yeah, I know.

ROBERTS: And your husband has kinda joked, just a little bit, about the knock, knock, knock 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, young man. Is he really concerned about that?

OBAMA: No. I mean, I think he likes to -- fathers in particular, I don't think they really know how they're going to feel until it happens. You know? There's nothing like the look on his face when Malia dresses up for a party and she's heading out. And she walks past him. And you can see his face sort of just drop a little bit. Like, what was that? You know? He's a little gray. People think the gray is from his job. It's from his children. So, we'll see how that goes.

STEPHANOPOULOS: Welcome to the club on that one.

ELIZABETH VARGAS: Good luck.

STEPHANOPOULOS: I'm loving all the details that are coming in about the secret Oscar announcement.

VARGAS: It was like something out of Argo.

STEPHANOPOULOS: Yeah. One of the producers told "the hollywood reporter" they had to fly secretly to the White House. They had to keep it off the manifests. Keep it off all the program runs. First Lady said yes immediately. Se said, "I think it's a great idea. We watch movies all the time at the White House." And they pulled it off.

VARGAS: They sure did! That was great!

Scott Whitlock
Scott Whitlock
Scott Whitlock is the senior news analyst for the Media Research Center and a contributing editor for NewsBusters.org