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NBC reportedly ready to retire Jay Leno


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#26 OFFLINE   phrelin

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Posted 04 March 2013 - 05:40 PM

From Forbes Numbers Don't Lie: NBC Should Replace Jay Leno With Jimmy Fallon Now:

...That's important because the value of moving Fallon to 11:35 in 2014 is it would help NBC hold the line against ABC, which has made inroads with viewers age 18 to 49 since moving Jimmy Kimmel into that slot. Like Fallon -- and unlike Leno -- Kimmel has a footprint that goes well beyond his television audience, with a knack for producing videos that go viral on YouTube. (Kimmel's video of parents telling their children they ate all their Halloween candy has gotten more than 25 million views; Fallon's "Evolution of Mom Dancing" video with Michelle Obama has racked up more than 14 million plays in a few days.)

And Kimmel's Q scores are better than either NBC host's: positive Q of 16, negative Q of 22. Could we be looking at the new king of late night?

The issue not being addressed is will the younger audience watch late night broadcast TV? Or will they find other distractions?

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#27 OFFLINE   Laxguy

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Posted 04 March 2013 - 05:49 PM

Lordy! Where is taste? It's hard to be pleased with the trend towards crassness in late night TV. It's been downhill since Jack Paar, and accelerating as we near (hopefully we are nearing) the bottom of the pit of boorishness.
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#28 OFFLINE   mreposter

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Posted 04 March 2013 - 05:51 PM

But Kimmel?? Yuck. His only funny bit was sex with Matt Damon.


What host was it that had a running joke about David Duchovny having a mancrush on him? Those were some crazy bits!
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#29 OFFLINE   spartanstew

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Posted 04 March 2013 - 08:08 PM

I never liked Leno, and have never watched Kimmel or OBrien.

I've been watching Letterman though since 1982. I'll admit, however, that even though I still record them all, I typically only watch about 1 per week (good guest, Jack Hannah, stupid pet/human tricks).

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#30 OFFLINE   Maruuk

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 12:50 AM

phrelin makes a good point--how does all this play with the Millennials? This is a creaky and ancient format from 3 generations ago. It comes off like blackface and baggy pants comedians to Millennials. It's overkill on a grand scale, too many guys doing the exact same thing. It's really just a sleeping pill for the over 50 crowd. Millennials are online or texting or doing the nasty or all 3 after 11pm.

#31 OFFLINE   Nick

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 08:17 AM

...Millennials are online or texting or doing the nasty or all 3 after 11pm.


*txt* *txt* *txt*

"oh baby"

*txt* *txt*

"ooh ooooh"

*txt* *txt*

"aaaarrrrrrgh*

*txt* *txt**txt* *txt* *txt* *txt* *txt* *txt* *txt* *txt* ...

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#32 OFFLINE   mreposter

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Posted 06 March 2013 - 06:44 PM

The issue not being addressed is will the younger audience watch late night broadcast TV? Or will they find other distractions?


Yeah, they're all pretty much recycling the Tonight Show format that's been around for, what, 50 years? I was a bit surprised that Conan didn't try to do something more outside the box when he moved to TBS, but it's just the same old same old.

Maybe John Stewart is the true alternative.
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#33 OFFLINE   Maruuk

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 02:12 AM

I actually know lots of folks who are busy DVRing The Daily Show and Colbert after the 11:00 news. They wouldn't watch one of those lame-ass formulaic talk shows if you stuck a gun to their head.

#34 OFFLINE   thirteen

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 05:27 AM

As I think Mark Evanier pointed out on his blog, whoever is spreading this rumor waited until Leno went on vacation (for a week?) and so couldn't address it right away on his show. The timing suggests this is a negotiation ploy regarding Leno's next contract. I don't watch these shows anymore, and haven't in years; they're just not interesting anymore. Maybe they should bring back the overnight movie.

#35 OFFLINE   mreposter

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 06:15 PM

At 11:30 most viewers want something safe, simple and predictable. They just want to turn off their brains, have a laugh or two and then go to sleep.

Leno addresses all of those points very well, and increasingly so does David Letterman.
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#36 OFFLINE   dpeters11

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 06:21 PM

Further in the rumor mill, replacement for Fallon when he moves to Tonight Show, Howard Stern.

#37 OFFLINE   Laxguy

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 08:19 PM

Further in the rumor mill, replacement for Fallon when he moves to Tonight Show, Howard Stern.


OMG! The slide into the abyss continues....... I hope the mill is wrong.
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#38 OFFLINE   dpeters11

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 08:43 PM

Me as well, though if I close my eyes while hearing him talk, I can pretend its Alan Alda.

#39 OFFLINE   fluffybear

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Posted 07 March 2013 - 09:22 PM

Me as well, though if I close my eyes while hearing him talk, I can pretend its Alan Alda.


and that's an improvement??

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#40 OFFLINE   Maruuk

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 03:06 AM

They do sound alike, don't they?

#41 OFFLINE   dpeters11

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 08:35 AM

and that's an improvement??


I like Alan Alda more than Howard Stern. Not saying he'd be a good late night show host.

#42 OFFLINE   makaiguy

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 09:25 AM

At 11:30 most viewers want something safe, simple and predictable. They just want to turn off their brains, have a laugh or two and then go to sleep.

Leno addresses all of those points very well, and increasingly so does David Letterman.


Not for me. Letterman doesn't lull me to sleep, he increasingly p*sses me off.
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#43 OFFLINE   Maruuk

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 02:06 PM

Letterman for well over ten years just seems tired of HIMSELF. He projects boredom and even some hostility about having to do the same old crap endlessly, night after tedious night. Take the pension, Dave!

#44 OFFLINE   Nick

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 02:44 PM

Letterman for well over ten years just seems tired of HIMSELF. He projects boredom and even some hostility about having to do the same old crap endlessly, night after tedious night. Take the pension, Dave!

It's too late for letterman to go out on top. Let's hope he has the decency to retire before he hits rock bottom.

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#45 OFFLINE   James Long

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 04:58 PM

Winning a Kennedy Center Honor is a good point.

#46 OFFLINE   phrelin

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 05:27 PM

Winning a Kennedy Center Honor is a good point.

Yes, that was significant recognition. Carson got one in 1993.

On the other hand, my better half gave up on Letterman a few years ago.

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#47 OFFLINE   Maruuk

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 05:39 PM

I loved Letterman when he started out. I met him at a friend's comedy club, he asked me how his set went. Very nice, slightly insecure guy. His early stuff was fresh and edgy and he was a big fave of the college crowd. But that was like...a million years ago!

#48 OFFLINE   TomCat

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 05:43 PM

Letterman has seemed really old and passe for years. He has seemed bored with the gig for at least 10 years. His gags have been falling flat since the 90's. Why is he still around?...

I agree completely with every point here, but there is a good reason that Letterman is still around, and that is that his show is a money machine for CBS. $200 mil in pure profit times 30+ years is not an insignificant number; only a handful of top movie stars have starred in films over their careers that have cumulatively topped 6 billion-with-a-B dollars. And there seems to be no falloff in that number attributable to Dave.

Many forget that there is a very sharp distinction between Leno and Letterman; people tune into Jay for the monologue and the guests; they are not there to see Jay be Jay, they are there to see what the guests have to say to him. Jay's numbers reflect that; up for good guests, down for not-so-good guests, and severe tuneout after the monologue.

Letterman is different; people do not tune into Letterman to see what the guests say, they tune in to see what Dave says to the guests. Leno is just the emcee, while Letterman is a true unique talent with a point of view that people find interesting. He is naturally funny, while Jay is good at telling scripted jokes as a standup. Dave is not everyone's cup of tea (and the lower but steadier numbers prove that as well), but then neither are you, and neither am I. If he were, he would only be less interesting.

My personal opinion is that while possibly more bored and jaded, Dave is still Dave, and is still the same exact fascinating character he was in 1982. The show was better in 1982, but a lot of that is that Dave was the anti-Carson then, and since 1993 he has been mainstream, and that is because what is new and fresh and different eventually becomes mainstream if it is successful and has longevity. He invented that form of hosting, let's not forget, and no one has been able to host from the anti-Carson position more effectively than him for over 30 years.

What has deteriorated is the quality of the writing, the bits, and the musical guests (99 times out of a hundred I delete the show 12 bars into the musical guest). Maybe that says something about Dave no longer driving that. Nothing has been as funny as the monkey cam or the trampoline jump onto a velcro wall since coming to CBS, sadly. He is obviously phoning it in, but even in that mode he still runs rings around Jay as far as an interviewer and as a totally unique and interesting talent. I think he is a national treasure, and so does the Kennedy Center, apparently.

Here is the most ironic thing: The unquestionably best guest on Late Night with David Letterman back in the 80's? Jay Leno. Whatever happened to that guy?
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#49 OFFLINE   TomCat

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 06:04 PM

...Letterman - Used to be really good, but has grown in the last five to eight years into a one-sided political cheapshot artist. He should understand that Carson did political humor equally at both sides, all in fun, and without an agenda...

Stewert - See Letterman, above, but without the residual talent...

I think 30+ years as a top network talent might have earned him the right to an agenda. At least he is finally passionate about something, and that was a quality missing even back in the NBC years.

Do you remember the old joke "The definition of an a**hole is anyone on the freeway that wants to drive faster than you do, or slower than you do." Maybe the underlying principle there applies here; point of view is everything.

Sam, I hope you will forgive me for attempting to read between the lines, but just because someone does not agree with your personal political views (which you are entitled to) does not make that something to judge their level of talent on. To me, Letterman and Stewart are two of the three funniest people on earth (and don't even get me started on Howard), but they probably seem funnier to me because I often agree with their political opinions. That said, they are still just as funny to me when I don't.

Dennis Miller is a great example; one that I may be as guilty of judging as anyone. I though he was the most-talented comic ever, back in the day of him having a show on HBO (first show I ever saw in HD). Then 911 happened, and something about that changed him, and greatly changed his political views. Now I don't find him funny at all; he just seems like that tired old man yelling at kids to get off of his lawn. It's like someone let go of the baloon and all the funny leaked out.

But I will admit, Dennis is probably still a very talented guy; I just can't see that anymore. And maybe part of that is that my views no longer coincide with his.

So I am not condemning you or your opinions; I just think that viewing things in this way is due to human nature, and we all probably have an inclination to react the same way to that.
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#50 OFFLINE   hdtvfan0001

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 06:12 PM

Jay Leno has been talking to the media for years about ending his Tonight Show gig...so I suspect this is a mutual decision that "the time has come". Not really any surprise.

I also don't believe ANY replacement or schedule change will return late night TV viewing to where it once was...the audiences and viewing habits have changed over the years, and the overall late night TV viewing numbers in total have diminished.

Had DVRs not come along to allow folks to watch these late night shows at viewer convenient times...things may even be lower in terms of folks following them.
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