Monday, September 4 was Shannon Sharpe's first day at ESPN, this time sitting across the debate desk from Stephen A. Smith on First Take. The pair are quite theatrical if anything and as such it was expected that they would have something special for Sharpe's first episode. It turns out that special something was... re-enacting a Forrest Gump scene as a cold open of sorts to the show?
I don't know what else to tell you, reader, other than Sharpe was wearing a preposterous hat that we can only hope will return soon.
Truly have no idea what's going on here. Why did they do this? Why did they choose Forrest Gump, of all movies? Above all, how the hell did Sharpe get Smith agree to be Gump?
First Take has been the Stephen A. show for quite some time now but this is the most proof we've gotten yet that the production team is happy to just let him cook up whatever and then make it reality. Smith and Sharpe probably share a love for this movie and really wanted to pay homage and nobody cared enough to push back because what does it matter if they're cooking up takes soon after? That is the only reasonable explanation for what we just saw.
It is not unusual that these two leave the audience with more questions than answers but this was real weird. However, in terms of content, it's a great start for the Smith/Sharpe partnership.