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Posts tagged as late night with david letterman

The Episode Where David Letterman Rotated the Screen 360°

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.)

Yesterday it was announced that very soon we would be coming to the end of an era. Next year, David Letterman will retire [...]

Looking Back at Bill Murray's Best Appearances on Letterman

Bill Murray was the first ever guest on Late Night with David Letterman back in 1982, and over the past 31 years, Murray has been one of Dave's most beloved and unpredictable late night guests. He and Letterman have a rapport that has evolved over time, with running a myriad of running jokes from salt imbalances to Olivia Newton-John. Each appearance from Murray is an event in itself, with stunts, costumes, musical numbers, and whatever else he's into that week. Here's a chronological look at appearances of Bill Murray on David Letterman's shows.

Understandably, Letterman was a bit nervous on his first Late Night episode and he [...]

Late Night Becomes the Late Show as Letterman Says Goodbye to NBC

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 120,000 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.)

In this, the final "From the Archives" of November, we present the final installment of our arbitrary theme looking at some of the more [...]

Inside the Almost 100% Successful 1985 Late Night with David Letterman Book

Everyone knows that Merrill Markoe just wrote a book called Cool, Calm & Contentious. But did you know she also did a first book? It’s true, because that is how ordinal numbers work, and for the purposes of this, it is Late Night with David Letterman: The Book.

Perhaps you can tell by the cover that this book was published in 1985 (also: there are some Tip O’Neill jokes). But: it captures a lot of what we might now refer to as “Late Night High Ironic” and at the time was referred to as “confusing to anyone not accustomed to constantly adjusting their point of reference”. That [...]

Chris Elliott Made It to Letterman Last Night After Finishing the NYC Marathon

Chris Elliott appeared on The Late Show with David Letterman last night, and since his career really began when he started writing and performing bits on Letterman's Late Night show, it's not a huge surprise that his appearance, ostensibly to plug his new returning Adult Swim show Eagleheart, really was just one giant, marathon-themed sketch. Even Dave seemed impressed.

Found: James Urbaniak Telling a Joke On 'Late Night with David Letterman' in 1983

Last October, as part of Vulture and UCB Comedy's Pop Culture Memory Lane series, all-star viner and Venture Brothers star James Urbaniak shared a story about how he once helped David Letterman tell one of his monologue jokes as a teenager back in Late Night's early years. This is how Urbaniak told it:

In part because today is the 20th anniversary of the 1,819th and final episode of the incredibly influential Late Night with David Letterman, and partly because we just found it in the catacombs of the internet over the weekend, here is video of 19-year-old "Jim" Urbaniak hijacking Letterman's monologue on the night of February 23, [...]

The Episode When David Letterman Was Too Tired to Do a Show

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 120,000 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.)

One of the best things about Late Night with David Letterman was that in its prime, you never knew what was going to happen. [...]

Christmas with the Lettermans

On December 19, 1984, after devoting entire episodes to a bar mitzvah and an intermediate school's election night, and before their episodes from an airplane and a hotel room, Late Night with David Letterman presented Christmas with the Lettermans, a one hour send-up of every single cheesy Christmas special that had ever run on television. The special, which ran unsuspectingly on a Wednesday during Letterman's usual 12:35am time slot, won Late Night the Emmy for outstanding writing in a variety or music program for the second year in a row.

The special began with NBC's classic "brought to you in living color" identification that welcomed viewers to countless peacock [...]

Looking Back at 15 of Leno's Best Appearances on Letterman's 'Late Night'

On last friday's Tonight Show, Bravo host Andy Cohen attempted to wring some gossip out of Jay Leno by asking about the most annoying misconception people have of him. Leno immediate jumped to the "feud" between himself and David Letterman, insisting that the two really like each and that he still finds Letterman incredibly funny, even saying that the two spoke on the phone relatively recently about "things and TV and whanot," such as the evolving late night situation at NBC.

The story of the Letterman/Leno feud has been well-documented since Bill Carter's The Late Shift (and its HBO movie adaptation) chronicled the conflict surrounding NBC's decision to choose Leno over [...]

The Episode Where David Letterman Had 13 Cameras

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 120,000 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.)

As all of my surface dwelling readers are already aware, the winds of change are once again blowing around the gates of late night [...]

Letterman's 10 Most Genuine Moments with His Guests

In the New Yorker's 1978 profile of TV icon Johnny Carson, author Kenneth Tynan pinpoints the essential quality of Carson's genius: contempt. It's what the paterfamilias talk show host imparted to fellow midwestern David Letterman, rightful heir to the Tonight Show estate. In the early days however, Letterman ran aground. As the 1980s saw the Late Show struggling to find its way, there was no telling what Carson saw in the weatherman-turned-bumbling court jester. Dave's routine lacked both the deceptive modesty and turnaround wit he's now able to muster five nights a week, even, and especially when, his guests falter.

Letterman was never a great comedian. Jay Leno was. [...]