A while ago, I did somewhat lame reviews of late night shows. Now, I’m coming back with better, full-fledged reviews of these shows. It makes sense to do this now that a lot of the hosts are different now. I haven’t seen Conan at all so that show won’t be reviewed. As for the others, I might as well do better reviews than last time. Conan O’Brien is the longest lasting of the current late night hosts, provided you factor in his hiatus from hosting after the Tonight Show conflict. Since David Letterman’s record counted with a hiatus of his own, then he’s probably the longest lasting, even if some shows have technically been on the air longer than his current show. But now that I’m done mentioning him and his show that I’m unable to see, I might as well get to the reviews of these shows.
The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon: Status- Currently on NBC at 11:35/10:35 Central weeknights. Why I’ve seen it- I was a fan of Jimmy Fallon’s Late Night. Noteworthiness- This is a continuation of the long running Tonight Show franchise with its sixth or seventh host depending on if one counts Jay Leno twice. This is considered more technologically advanced than some other late night talk shows due to how viewers can affect it. Description- Jimmy Fallon hosts a late night talk show. Notable People- This host is now Jimmy Fallon who was a regular cast member on Saturday Night Live before he had an ill fated attempt at a film career. Afterwards, he hosted Late Night for a while and then ultimately moved up an hour to this show. Pros- It is pretty much the same great show that he hosted on Late Night only it’s the Tonight Show instead. If you liked him before, then you’ll like him now. Cons- Some of the bits are pointless and go on for too long. It can be overall scattered throughout an episode. Note to Parents- The episodes are typically TV14 and I can’t think of any exceptions to that. Recommendation- This show is pretty good and you might want to watch it if you don’t already have plans late at night. Prediction- I’d say that Jimmy Fallon will be here for a while. I don’t know who might replace him when he or the network decides that he should leave, but it would either be Seth Meyers or some notable SNL alumni. Reception: generally positive. Grade: A-.
Jimmy Kimmel Live: Status- Currently on ABC at 11:35/10:35 Central weeknights. Why I’ve seen it- I was interested in it and looking for an alternative to David Letterman’s show at the time. Noteworthiness- After David Letterman’s retirement, this show is the longest running late night show out of those still on the air, beating out Last Call with Carson Daley. It should be noted that this is not the longest tenured of the current late night hosts. That would be Conan O’Brian. He has two part monologues sometimes which can be interesting. The show used to air a half hour later, after Nightline. Sometimes, there have been primetime reruns and specials of this show. It used to be live at one point, but they changed it so that it is only live on occasion. Description- This is a late night talk show hosted by Jimmy Kimmel. Pros- The show is always funny and interesting. Cons- It can be pretty pointless from time to time. Not all of it works or makes sense. Note to Parent- Some teens may like some of the bits, but people younger than that probably shouldn’t watch this show. That’s not even taking the late air time into consideration. Recommendation- I’d say that you should probably watch this. Prediction- This is likely to stay on the air as long as Jimmy Kimmel wants to keep working as a late night host. I don’t know who might replace him once he leaves, whenever that is. Reception: good. Grade: A.
The Late Show with Stephen Colbert: Status- Currently on CBS at 11:35/10:35 Central weeknights. Why I’ve seen it- I was interested in it, I typically watch new late night shows, and I typically watch every show on CBS at least once. Noteworthiness- This version of the Late Show is only the second incarnation of it with its first replacement host after David Letterman, the original host, left. Description- Stephen Colbert hosts a mostly standard late night talk show. Notable People- Stephen Colbert, formerly a fake newscaster who did The Colbert Report, is the host of this show. Pros- He doesn’t limit himself to a certain type of guest. It most certainly has the type of weirdness that you would come and expect from late night talk shows. A lot of the fake news aspects of his old show remain on this one. Cons- He can be a bit over the top sometimes. The monologue is shorter than one would like. It seems like they are trying to put too much into a single episode each night. There seems to be too many guests in one night. Note to Parents- This is the only late night show that I can think of that has a regular TVPG rating. Keep that in mind should your kids be up that late. Recommendation- I say that he’s ultimately a good host in the end and worth a watch. Prediction- If I had to venture a guess, I’d have to say that Stephen Colbert will probably be here for at least a decade, probably longer. I don’t know who might replace him when he wants to leave. It would possibly be James Corden, although I’m not sure where CBS would plan to go with that in the future. Reception: very positive. Grade: A.
Saturday Night Live: Status- Currently on NBC at 11:30/10:30 Central on Saturdays. Why I’ve seen it- I was interested in it. Noteworthiness- The idea for this show started all the way back in the Johnny Carson era of the Tonight Show. When he decided to scale back his hosting duties before he ultimately retired, a late night slot grew open and they decided to put a live variety show on Saturday nights. This show has been on since the 1970s. Description- A celebrity host joins an ensemble cast in hosting a sketch show. Pros- The show is quite funny and interesting. It always tackles current events. A lot of it becomes popular online. Cons- The cast is always changing, even during a season still on the air. Sometimes the writing is off. Each episode tends to have a worthless sketch. The hosts can be bad at times. Various controversies have arisen partly due to it being live. Note to Parents- Teens and older can watch, but you probably shouldn’t let most younger people tune in. Recommendation- I’d say that this is probably worth it, possibly depending on your sleep schedule. Prediction- The death of its creator Lorne Michaels could cause a bad enough change to cancel it. I’m not sure what else would potentially end the show, although it could be any number of things. Reception: great. Grade: B-.
Late Night with Seth Meyers: Status- This NBC show airs weeknights at 12:30/11:30 Central or a bit later. Based on your time zone, it technically actually airs early in the mornings on Tuesdays through Saturdays, although most people up that late forget that midnight is officially the start of the next day. Why I’ve seen it- I watch most late night shows at least once. Noteworthiness- Late Night has its fourth host with Seth Meyers. This show has been on for a long time, mostly to air after the Tonight Show as another late night talk show. Description- Seth Meyers hosts a late night talk show. Notable People- Seth Meyers had a long tenure on Saturday Night Live and was once the longest tenured person still in the cast. He was the Weekend Update anchor for longer than anyone else on the show (although he did once share his duties with both Amy Poehler and Cecily Strong, over the course of his time there). Fred Armistan, from Saturday Night Live and Portlandia is the bandleader and sidekick, even though you won’t always see him on the show. Pros- He seems to be a pretty good host of Late Night. His jokes and other bits work for the most part. Cons- Some parts of it can be stupid like the stuff that Fred Armistan makes up. Not all of it makes sense. The politics of the show can be dumb. Note to Parents- Like most late night shows, I’d say teens can watch, but not younger aged people. Recommendation- I’d say that this is a pretty good show to watch, although I would rather watch James Corden’s show. Prediction- The show gets good ratings so it is likely that they keep Seth Meyers as a host. Now, NBC has been known for the hugely moronic decisions in late night talk shows, so we’ll see if they keep him or not. He is likely to be replaced by another alumni of Saturday Night Live (one who might not have even started working on the show yet) whenever he leaves. Reception: mixed then positive. Grade: C-.
Nightline: Status- Currently on ABC after Jimmy Kimmel Live starting at around 12:25/11:35 Central. Why I’ve seen it- It originally aired before Jimmy Kimmel Live and when I wasn’t interested in watching The Late Show with David Letterman, I watched this before that show started. Noteworthiness- This has been on the air since the Iran hostage crisis. It predates the airing of Jimmy Kimmel Live. Description- This is basically a national news show on the events of the preceding day. Pros- The show is good at mentioning important current events. It keeps people updated on what is going on in the world. Cons- With its new time slot, it is likely to lose viewers to late night talk shows. A lot of what they cover can be considered mundane and unimportant. Note to Parents- If you typically let your kids watch the news, then you can let them watch this show. If you don’t, then I wouldn’t let them watch this. Remember that the news can be gruesome. Recommendation- I honestly don’t know what to put here. There are other good shows on at the time that this airs. But it is a good show to watch so I would say that it is worth watching if you are up that late and don’t like the competition that is has. Prediction- With it having been on since the 70s, it is tempting to say that it would last forever. However, it probably will last forever unless ABC would rather air another late night show after Jimmy Kimmel. Reception: somewhat positive. Grade: B-.
The Late Late Show with James Cordon: Status- Currently on CBS at 12:35/11:35 Central on weeknights. Why I’ve seen it- I watch every CBS and late night show at least once. Noteworthiness- This is the fourth regular host in the Late Late Show franchise replacing Craig Ferguson and a bunch of guest hosts. This show has been on the air for a while with different hosts. Description- British comedian James Cordon hosts a late night talk show. What makes his a bit different is that all of the guests are typically out at once instead of one at a time. Pros- It’s very funny and very good. The show works for the most part. Cons- Some of what they do is utterly pointless and stupid, particularly with the sidekick Reggie Watts. Note to Parents- It might be more acceptable to some ages than other shows, but I’d say that most kids shouldn’t watch this. Recommendation- I recommend it if you don’t care about lack of sleep by staying up so late. Prediction- I think that James Cordon will probably stay for as long as he wants to. When he does leave, I have no idea who might replace him. Reception: somewhat positive. Grade: A+.
Last Call with Carson Daley: Status- This is currently on NBC at 1:35/12:35 Central on Tuesdays through Saturdays (since midnight is when a new day begins). Why I’ve seen it- It was on? I don’t really have a good answer here. Noteworthiness- This is the latest airing new show on a regular basis on network television. Description- Carson Daley does an unusually formatted show of some sort. Notable People- Carson Daley, who also hosts The Voice, is the host of this show. I’m guessing that many of the people on it are notable as well. Pros- There is something new to watch this late at night. Cons- Nothing about it is interesting or worth watching. Note to Parents- Well, remembering how late this airs is enough reason to not let your kids watch it, although I don’t know whether or not it is good for kids since I haven’t really seen that much of it. Recommendation- If this show is on, turn off your TV and go to bed. Prediction- Carson Daley could easily get screwed out of hosting this show, although it’s possible he never will. I don’t if it would continue with a new host should Carson Daley leave for one reason or another. If there were a new host for this, hopefully it would be a much better show then. Reception: negative. Grade: F.