Why Karl was a dead man walking
Karl Stefanovic survived being drunk on air, getting divorced and meeting a new woman ten years younger.
But the moment his Big Fat Mexican Wedding hit the headlines, he was a dead man walking.
In the end it came down to the numbers:
• Seven bridesmaids and seven groomsmen;
• Three days of partying;
• 200 "closest friends and family";
• 400 maracas;
• Five make-up artists flown in from New York;
• 50 paparazzi hiding in bushes; and
• 100 Mexican snipers patrolling the beach.
And the numbers that really mattered:
• Three children who didn't want to be there;
• One ex-wife sniping on the sideline; and
• A new partner ten years younger than him whom he met five months after the end of his 21-year marriage.
Karl will never earn $2 million again on TV in Australia - that much is certain. He's peaked.
His popularity has always been based on his knock-about image as an everyday Aussie dad.
The wedding was the final nail on that coffin. His cookbook, Karl Cooks, had recipes for baked beans and steak sangas and bacon-wrapped rissoles.
It's a far cry from the wedding menu, which included heirloom tomato micro green salad, artisanal aged balsamic vinegar and grilled beef tenderloin with tampiquena, mushroom enchilada, roasted poblana pepper and avocado salsa.
Leaving his wife and three kids, who have not appeared in public with their father since, was the beginning of the end for Karl.
He was further weakened by the loss of his on-air "wife" Lisa Wilkinson, who was the perfect foil to his larrikinism.
Then there was Uber-gate, which showed him to be disloyal and disrespectful, and a year of low ratings for Nine's flagship show.
Although many Today audience members would have gone through divorce themselves, it's the way Karl and his new wife Jasmine have flaunted their relationship - and wedding - that's put them off.
The last straw for me is the Who Weekly exclusive media deal - from the man who said there wasn't a media deal.
The eight-page cover spread details the wedding in breathless detail, assuming the reader is along for the ride.
We learned "Jas had a note delivered to Karl asking him to meet her in the chapel for a private moment before the wedding so he could see her dress".
"It was a private moment for us," the magazine reports. Well, not so private now, is it?
We learned Jas gave her bridesmaids slippers from her shoe brand (freebies, no doubt).
We learned the "entire wedding centred around their combined families - except, it seems, Karl's three children, who were waiting on the sidelines for their father to notice them.
Where were his sons when the traditional "handfasting ritual" - a binding of hands with ribbons - took place?
The story says Ava, his daughter was there. But what about his two sons - one of whom said the wedding was "s---"?
There was guitar strumming and soft singing as Karl appeared, gasps from the crowd when the bride appeared and a mariachi band that played as Karl kissed the bride. Don't they realise no one really cares?
The story concludes with Jas saying that what's important are the "people you love, who love you back".
Karl was once one of the most-loved men on Australian TV. Now audiences have stopped loving him back.
Let's hope he's saved some money to pay for that ridiculous wedding.