In the highly anticipated battle of the morning TV shows Tuesday, Sarah Palin played it for laughs – at her own expense – while Katie Couric didn’t play at all.

The former Alaska governor and paid Fox News contributor appeared on the “Today” show as a guest host, opposite Couric’s week-long presence on “Good Morning America” over at ABC News.

And within the first few minutes of NBC’s popular morning program, it was clear that Palin had a strategy for handling the show that was once hosted by Couric – plenty of self-deprecating humor. By contrast, Couric’s approach was to completely ignore Palin; she made no reference to the 2008 race or her blockbuster interview with the then-vice presidential candidate that many credited with dooming the GOP ticket.

The first glimpse viewers of the “Today” show got of Palin was her head buried behind an open newspaper.

“Oh, man, she’s doing her homework!” co-host Matt Lauer said.


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