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WBEN NewsRadio 930>Audio & Video on Demand>>Jay Leno's "Tonight's" Have No Tomorrow

Jay Leno's "Tonight's" Have No Tomorrow

Feb 7, 2014|

Bob Thompson

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Jay Leno was choked up and misty eyed as he said goodbye to that tonight challenging a 22 year run last night. They have kind of a well I got -- presidents astronauts. Movie stars. It's just been incredible. Bob Thompson is on the WB and lifeline by abstract of the Bleier center for TV and pop culture at Syracuse University Bob good morning good morning who do you think was the the biggest target of his jokes over the years. I think they'd come out as Bill Clinton number one and George Bush number two in the what do you what do you make on this and by the way I think get a win when comedian code have been Bill Clinton is. Still president up that are because Bill Clinton was those are some good times for every comedian not just level. A lot of material remains -- That was our whole Monica Lewinsky thing kept them going for a long long time. So. Bob this the late night landscape it's changed so much I mean when you think back when Johnny Carson was there he was can't really in his time and banana so many channels hundreds of channels and I don't think people stay up this latest they did before is that this shows relevant. DVR is to be here right cart and pretty much had the -- where there were times when he was the only game in town for late night -- least some of the other -- going up here at that. At that point dumb. And now of course we've every network. Doing them but -- state should. Leno would still on top it's it's hard to believe that while. He wasn't the most innovative he was probably the least innovative many people. -- like can he seemed old school old school -- -- this past week he was getting twelve million. -- million viewers I don't think felon could get that many in the beginning but I think that -- actually probably a a pretty good guy to take over that franchise and -- people saying that. These shows are dinosaurs. I would be surprised at the Tonight Show is still going 22 years from now. And a doctor Bob every tonight show hostess had shining moments like we Johnny Carson. There was a dead Ames's -- with throwing the -- and hitting the target in the crotch. Mean that provided the longest sustained laughter I guess in TV history and -- par before that. His public quarreled with Ed Sullivan that went on for months and months. Now you say the jail on the wasn't very innovative so what do you suppose folks are gonna remember him him for. Well he is of course the clip that really would that show he would be public I would be Hugh Grant once he mentioned did last night in his last episode of the matter of fact he told another up. I Hugh Grant joke -- granted then. Of course married to a very beautiful woman caught. With somebody else. Then -- famously -- what we are you thinking. Another long sustained laughter and it wasn't long after that that Leno took over from Letterman in first place should never let it. That never let it go. The reason that may not be remembered as much is that Hugh Grant is beginning to fade into the memories of a lot of people in probably twenty years from now that. Joke that was so funny the -- the reference we've been forgotten. You know when Carson left we didn't see him again. When it went about Leno. I think we're gonna feel Leno -- certainly if you you'll be able to see income and continued to perform you know life. Situations like you said the implied last night that he wasn't. You know going to another network but I -- Can't imagine he's not gonna -- are out of regular television for very long but who knows. What's interesting when Carson said goodbye and his spinal. -- which show Leno quoted last night Carson never mentioned Leno wants -- that entire broadcast. Leno of course mentioned Fallon brought felon on Monday night. This transition with a much more immutable. Well you know jail on a lasted 22 years Jimmy Fallon what do you think is a completely different kind of comedian's life. Yeah it's and but fell to 39 Leno was about 42 when he took over the tonight show. Felon in different but I I think he's actually really good choice the problem with Conan would is that. The people who loved Conan really -- -- in the people who didn't just couldn't get it stop this guy -- just come from that two or something. Well that is both gut these innovations in the we -- modern stopped but I think younger. People like many of my college age students really like spell it. But he can also -- amiable and -- knife that I think he's the one guy out there. That may -- both -- law and grandchild. Might be able to get into here I think he could really speed. The new look -- but it -- tonight show our home but we'll have to see it I don't think it's gonna be immediate that think if you look at Alan's ratings come April. They're probably gonna be a lot lower than levels were but you gotta do these things a year or two to see what happened. Hey -- this was fun thanks for joining us thank you and -- Thompson director of the Bleier center for TV and pop culture. -- Syracuse University.

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