Paula Deen's 'Today' Interview Gives NBC a Ratings Victory

Maybe NBC should consider being the one company to back Paula Deen. While the embattled Food Network star experiences her worst week ever — with corporation after corporation cutting ties with Deen following the revelation that she had used the n-word — her troubles gave Today a much-needed victory.

For the first time in eight months, Today beat Good Morning America in the ratings, thanks to Matt Lauer's heavily scrutinized interview with Deen, who has come under fire for derogatory language and planning a slave-themed wedding in the past. The interview attracted nearly 4.8 million viewers for the network, which got an extra boost after the fact that Deen canceled an interview with Lauer last Friday made headlines for Today. "I'm here today because I want people to know who I am," she told Lauer during the interview. "I know my love for people, and I’m not going to sit here and tell everything I’ve done for people of color.”

So at least viewers love to hate Deen?

Image: NBC