The Paley Center for Media, which has locations in both New York and LA, dedicates itself to the preservation of television and radio history. Inside their vast archives of more than 150,000 television shows, commercials, and radio programs, there are thousands of important and funny programs waiting to be rediscovered by comedy nerds like you and me. Each week, this column will highlight a new gem waiting for you at the Paley Library to quietly laugh at. (Seriously, it’s a library, so keep it down.)
When one thinks about the standup comedy boom of the 1980s you probably think about comedians with household names like Seinfeld, Ellen, and Ray [...]
Well, here it is. After 22 years of hosting The Tonight Show, Leno took his final bow last night and gave the above heartfelt farewell to his audience and fans. Leno thanks the audience, the crew, writers, and producers for what he calls "the greatest 22 years of my life" and says he's looking forward to seeing Fallon take over later this month. Click through to watch celebs like Billy Crystal, Jack Black, Carol Burnett, and Oprah say goodbye to Leno through a surprise musical number and more.
On this morning's Today show, Matt Lauer sat down with Jay Leno and Jimmy Fallon to discuss the upcoming Tonight Show host transition ahead of Leno's final episode tomorrow night, and Fallon was sure to make it clear that Leno is welcome as a guest on the New York Tonight Show anytime. He told Lauer:
I'm just looking forward to the new chapter in my life. I told Jay, I gave him a roundtrip ticket to New York — coach, because he's humble. He could always upgrade if he wants. Honestly, as many jokes as he wants. The stage is his, he knows that. So whenever he wants, [...]
Released yesterday, here's the latest episode of Jerry Seinfeld's web series Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, with Jay Leno joining him in the passenger seat of some expensive rich person car. Leno and Seinfeld's conversation focuses a lot on their early days as standups, and you even get to hear Leno refer to Richard Pryor as "Richie Pryor."
Bill Cosby was on The Tonight Show last night to promote his new standup special, but instead he spent the first few minutes deconstructing the entire idea of a late night show by walking into the audience rather than to Jay's desk, then managing to get through an entire segment without really talking to the host at all. Below, he talks about his very first appearance on The Tonight Show.