David Letterman Announces Retirement

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Re: David Letterman Announces Retirement

Postby Hype » Fri Jun 06, 2014 10:55 am

Yes. I've been very surprised by how savvy Fallon has been. I noticed his writers seem to be stealing or "paying homage" to some things I'd thought were more associated with Conan, but he seems to have figured out how to go as broad as he can with that show (which is exactly where the Tonight Show should be).

What about someone like Wyatt Cenac doing a more "black" oriented version of something that combines what Arsenio used to do with the more modern Daily Show influenced stuff? It looks like Wyatt's doing a sitcom for AMC, but if (when) that falls through, maybe eventually he'll get into that kind of position, not unlike the way John Oliver has.
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Re: David Letterman Announces Retirement

Postby perkana » Fri May 08, 2015 8:23 am

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Re: David Letterman Announces Retirement

Postby clickie » Sun May 10, 2015 5:15 am

I'm gonna miss Dave. once he retires.
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Re: David Letterman Announces Retirement

Postby mockbee » Thu May 14, 2015 7:11 am

Really liked this, especially the end bit. Prime time late night is not where it's at....

David Letterman Knew How to Talk

By RICHARD ZOGLINMAY 14, 2015

THE imminent end, on May 20, of David Letterman’s 33-year run as a late-night TV host is a sad event for a number of reasons. Mr. Letterman’s “Late Show” monologues are still the gold standard in an increasingly crowded field. His Top 10 lists remain the most durable running gag in late-night television. (“Top 10 Things Overheard in Hillary Clinton’s Van”: “Polling indicates we should take the Taconic.”) He virtually invented the age of irony, and his self-mocking style has kept him a paragon of cool, even as his competitors have grown younger and his audience older.

But it’s easy to overlook the most important thing Mr. Letterman has nurtured in his three-plus decades as a nightly talk-show host: talk.

Talk — relatively spontaneous, genuine, unrehearsed conversation — was, of course, the main point of the genre when the “Tonight Show” was pioneered by Steve Allen back in 1954, redefined by Jack Paar when he took the helm in 1957, and turned into a national institution by Johnny Carson in the ’60s and ’70s. Here was a place where show-business celebrities could drop at least some of their public persona and give us a glimpse of what they were “really” like. Sure, that glimpse was always a little stage-managed — the conversational topics screened, the anecdotes carefully baked. But those nightly sessions on the “Tonight Show” guest couch were a relaxed, human-scale refuge in a hype-filled showbiz world.

Mr. Letterman, like Mr. Carson before him, understood this. He never shirked his publicity duties (“let’s show the clip”), and he valued guests like Martin Short and Steve Martin, who came primed with fresh material. But he took the interviews seriously. He asked real questions and actually listened to the answers. He rarely fawned, or let his guests off the hook. He poked their sensitive spots and cut through the phoniness.

When he talked to politicians and other newsmakers, he was informed, even passionate. (As the years went on, he did less and less to hide his liberal political views.) When he baited guests like Donald Trump and Bill O’Reilly, his quips couldn’t totally hide the disdain. When he talked to ordinary civilians — dog owners with their stupid pet tricks, kids showing off their science projects — he was naturally curious, engaged and winning. Whenever a star came on and tried to play him — Joaquin Phoenix in his sullen faux-rap-star phase, for example — Mr. Letterman showed no patience. He didn’t want a performance; he wanted people.

How times have changed. The late-night world that Mr. Letterman leaves behind is almost all performance. Jimmy Fallon has turned the “Tonight Show” into a festival of YouTube-ready comedy bits — lip-syncing contests, slow-jams of the news, musical impressions, games of Pictionary and egg Russian roulette. His interviews, meanwhile, have resurrected the kind of Merv Griffin-style celebrity gush that Mr. Letterman thought he had stamped out years ago.

Mr. Fallon is setting the pace for the new, performance-dominated late-night scene. James Corden, who has taken over the post-Letterman spot on CBS, introduces his guests with a peek into their dressing rooms — where we “discover” them hanging a picture or making a toast. The guests then are brought out together so Mr. Corden can interview them en masse, a group grope that almost guarantees nothing intimate will emerge.

Jon Stewart’s decision to leave “The Daily Show” later this year is another unsettling sign. What separates Mr. Stewart from all the sidekicks and special correspondents he has featured is that Mr. Stewart, for all the layers of sarcasm and mockery, speaks in his own voice, while the correspondents are doing put-ons. He’s venting; they’re acting.

Mr. Fallon, Mr. Corden and the rest are certainly talented performers. But that’s part of the problem. The nasty little secret is that almost all the good talk-show hosts have no talent — or at least make a good-faith effort to keep it hidden. Mr. Letterman never acted in sketches, except to make fun of how bad he was at it.

“I never thought I’d retire,” Mr. Letterman cracked on his show a few months ago. “I always thought I’d be impeached.” The self-deprecation was part of the package — like his frequent “savers,” the comebacks when a joke falls flat. It was a way of drawing the audience in, sharing the star’s insecurity and desperation.

Jimmy Fallon isn’t insecure; he’s just a happy, well-paid TV star having a ball. There’s no distance between the frenetic host and the Hollywood hypefest, no space on his show for anything authentic. He is always on, running at top speed.

Maybe he’ll eventually calm down and realize that he’s got the job. (His ratings are No. 1 by a mile.) But I can’t help admiring the “Conan” writer who a few weeks ago tweeted his disgruntlement at celebrities doing comedy bits on late-night TV. “You’ve let the popular kids appropriate the very art form that helped you deal,” he chided his fellow comedy writers.

His boss, Conan O’Brien, alas, responded with a public slapdown of the writer, and the offending tweets were quickly removed. It’s a new world, folks. The popular kids have taken over. And boy, can they lip-sync.
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Re: David Letterman Announces Retirement

Postby Hype » Thu May 14, 2015 7:44 am

It's because talk shows are a dead format. 30 years of the same people will do that to a genre. Conan and Letterman might have inspired genuine, talented, interesting people to get into comedy 25 years ago, but if those people don't take over for the kings quickly enough, you lose a generation, and we're left with corporate scrambling to maintain revenue streams. (Compare this to the label-driven music industry from about 2003-2010.)

The "you let the popular kids take over" sentiment is basically right, except it's not the popular kids, it's the brands the popular kids like... the shills for those brands are just whatever the brands can manage to cobble together before something of real substance hits the next generation's sweet spot.

(Inside) Amy Schumer is currently being touted as that next big thing (tm). I think for good reason, but we'll see if she can sustain the momentum she's got going now. Her show was originally conceived as a talk show... but the kids want more of the Key & Peele style of comedy. They don't care about news yet. Jon Stewart was too old for them (he's some thing you discover in college).
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Re: David Letterman Announces Retirement

Postby creep » Sat May 16, 2015 3:21 am

this was good.

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Re: David Letterman Announces Retirement

Postby Matz » Sat May 16, 2015 4:33 am

Adurentibus Spina wrote:
(Inside) Amy Schumer is currently being touted as that next big thing (tm). .


really?! she seems like a moron to me....bring back Mitch Hedberg from the dead please and let him show everybody how its done
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Re: David Letterman Announces Retirement

Postby Hype » Sat May 16, 2015 7:26 am

Matz wrote:
Adurentibus Spina wrote:
(Inside) Amy Schumer is currently being touted as that next big thing (tm). .


really?! she seems like a moron to me....bring back Mitch Hedberg from the dead please and let him show everybody how its done


I had the same initial thought as you about her, but I checked out older episodes of her show and I think she's really doing some pretty subtle satire/social commentary.

I love Mitch, but he wasn't that original... just another in the vein (no pun!) of Steven Wright, Henny Youngman, etc...

Norm MacDonald is a savant.
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Re: David Letterman Announces Retirement

Postby perkana » Sat May 16, 2015 8:16 am

mockbee wrote:Really liked this, especially the end bit. Prime time late night is not where it's at....

The guests then are brought out together so Mr. Corden can interview them en masse, a group grope that almost guarantees nothing intimate will emerge.

One of my favorite talk shows is The Graham Norton Show and he does interviews en masse. Guests can swear and they can drink alcohol.
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Re: David Letterman Announces Retirement

Postby clickie » Sun May 17, 2015 6:15 am

Tell you the truth, I kind of abandoned Dave's show once he swithched to CBS.
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Re: David Letterman Announces Retirement

Postby clickie » Sun May 17, 2015 6:36 am

Jiminy Glick, now that guy cracked me up.
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Re: David Letterman Announces Retirement

Postby Six7Six7 » Sun May 17, 2015 2:22 pm

I might be the only person who is 90% annoyed by Martin Short.

Save his appearance in Three Amigos and the movie Pure Luck, I have never liked the guy or found him funny.
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Re: David Letterman Announces Retirement

Postby Matz » Sun May 17, 2015 3:59 pm

one of my all time favorite moments of the Late show....can not believe they didn't show this when Steve was there for the last time recently. It's a 1000 times funnier than the Gay vacation imo

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Re: David Letterman Announces Retirement

Postby Hype » Sun May 17, 2015 8:39 pm

Six7Six7 wrote:I might be the only person who is 90% annoyed by Martin Short.

Save his appearance in Three Amigos and the movie Pure Luck, I have never liked the guy or found him funny.


He's not funny. He's evil.
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Re: David Letterman Announces Retirement

Postby clickie » Mon May 18, 2015 5:06 pm

Is Martin Short an evil person for real?
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Re: David Letterman Announces Retirement

Postby Matz » Wed May 20, 2015 2:37 pm

no if anyone is it's Bill Murray, I watched a couple of seconds of him on the last regular Late show today....shit that guy's not funny, wtf everybody thinks he is is a big mystery
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Re: David Letterman Announces Retirement

Postby perkana » Wed May 20, 2015 2:46 pm

I just think he could be the love of my life...


I don't know Martin Short personally, but I've always liked him. Tried to find the synchronized swimming short he did with Harry Shearer, but couldn't find it. That is one of my favorite SNL shorts.
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Re: David Letterman Announces Retirement

Postby Six7Six7 » Wed May 20, 2015 8:05 pm

Matz wrote:no if anyone is it's Bill Murray, I watched a couple of seconds of him on the last regular Late show today....shit that guy's not funny, wtf everybody thinks he is is a big mystery


He's an old man now.

But he's always been nothing short of amazing.
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Re: David Letterman Announces Retirement

Postby wally » Thu May 21, 2015 8:36 am

Six7Six7 wrote:I might be the only person who is 90% annoyed by Martin Short.

Save his appearance in Three Amigos and the movie Pure Luck, I have never liked the guy or found him funny.

nope. cant stand him.
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Re: David Letterman Announces Retirement

Postby Pandemonium » Thu May 21, 2015 9:37 am

wally wrote:
Six7Six7 wrote:I might be the only person who is 90% annoyed by Martin Short.

Save his appearance in Three Amigos and the movie Pure Luck, I have never liked the guy or found him funny.

nope. cant stand him.


Same here. When he was on SCTV back in the early 80's for a season or two, he was the only annoying comedian on that show.



I'll never forget going to a "surprise" test screening of the movie where Short played a 10 year old kid and the studio staff wouldn't let anyone leave until the movie was finished and people had filled out the lengthy questionnaire. The movie was so bad, people were *pissed* they had to sit through it even for free.
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