I've actually enjoyed the presenter/co-presenter dynamic of this new series. Mary Ann is much more likely to listen than Tony was for starters and, as had been mentioned, she isn't just some 'airhead' but at least has relevant academic qualifications. Don't get me wrong, Mick will be a huge loss, but the show has survived a number of his prolonged, illness and (IIRC) gammy leg related, absences. Francis Pryor is much less annoying that he was when he first started to appear on TT (and has ALMOST shut up about the 'realm of the dead' and chucking swords in streams)
Agree with the above. Besides which, from a purely TMA perspective, as I understand it Mick was generally considered to be first and foremost a medieval specialist. As you say FP is much less annoying than he was and his obsession with "liminal spaces" is more confined to his (actually very enjoyable) writing now.
Spaceship Mark's post hit the nail on the head didn't it. The headline in the Telegraph link said Mick Aston was leaving because a former model had been brought onto the show as a presenter. It only mentions that Mary-Ann Ochota has a Master's degree in archaeology and anthropology at the end of the report. She may have done some modelling work to help pay for her studies but it doesn't sound like 'dumbing down' to me.
I join everyone else in wishing Mick Aston well for the future ... one door closes, another opens - as they say.