Larry King Live vs. Piers Morgan Tonight

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Difference between Larry King and Piers Morgan

Who hasn't heard of Larry King or seen him on TV? The iconic media figure has been dishing out hard-hitting interviews for decades now, and his non-nonsense approach and gravely voice are just as distinctive and memorable as the suspenders he is rarely seen without. With the recent news of King’s replacement by Piers Morgan on CNN however, questions arose as they inevitably would as to whether or not Morgan has what it takes to fill King’s suspenders. Let's take a quick look at the lives of these two remarkable men to get an idea.

Larry King
Piers Morgan

Personal Life

Larry King was first married to Freda Miller in 1952, which was the first of eight marriages to seven women. King would later take Alene Akins–who was previously a Playboy bunny–as his third and fifth wife. King is currently married to Shawn Southwick, having been wedded since 1997. Although the couple filed for divorce in April, they have since called a halt to divorce proceedings. King has five children by three women. Piers Morgan was married to Marion Shalloe in 1991, with whom he had three sons. The couple divorced in 2008, after which Morgan was attached to Guardian columnist Marina Hyde. Morgan recently wed Celia Walden, who is a columnist and feature writer for the Daily Telegraph.


Larry King started out as a cleaner who also ran errands at a Miami Beach radio station. By the age of 24, King hit the airwaves for the first time. He would continue to work in radio until 1978, when he was finally assigned to an all-night talk show with national coverage. It was in 1985 when Larry King Live first aired on CNN. It is estimated that King has conducted no less than 40,000 interviews throughout his career. Piers Morgan first came to the public's attention as the youngest editor of The News of the World. Morgan assumed this position in 1994, when he was only 28. Morgan subsequently became editor of The Mirror, but a controversy involving fake photographs that allegedly showed Iraqi prisoners being abused by British soldiers led to his resignation. In addition to his newspaper career, Morgan has had some success as an author, having written eight books. Morgan achieved even wider fame as a contestant and then later a judge on the Celebrity Apprentice. Morgan’s latest achievement is taking over the CNN spot from Larry King, in a deal that reportedly cost £5.5 ($8.4) million.


Larry King can be frank and unflinching, although he tempers this with subtle irreverence and humor that can be hard to detect given his deadpan demeanor. Some of his more vocal critics have even suggested that he tends toward the "softer" questions, and that he has come unprepared for an interview many times. Perhaps in his defense, King has stated that his role as an interviewer is to stay in the background and that today's current crop of interviewers seem to place more focus on themselves rather than on their guests. Piers Morgan, on the other hand, tends toward the informal approach, although he has a reputation for being hard-hitting on occasion. His critics have accused him of being overly flashy and being a part of the "reality television-tabloid" approach to journalism.


Larry King

  • Known for his straightforward demeanor and distinctive suspenders
  • Can be frank and unflinching
  • Has been accused of sticking to less controversial questions
  • Has been known to be unprepared for interviews
  • Has interviewed over 40,000 people 

Piers Morgan

  • Was the youngest editor of The News of the World
  • First came to widespread public attention as a contestant and judge on The Apprentice
  • Popular judge on America's Got Talent
  • Replaced Larry King on CNN
  • Can be flashy on occasion
  • Has been accused of propagating the tabloid style of journalism

Who has more personal magnetism?
  • Larry King
  • Piers Morgan

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