After Johnny Carson's retirement from the show, Jay Leno stepped in as his permanent replacement. The format of the show has remained largely unchanged, consisting primarily of an opening ... See full summary »
David Letterman hosted this popular late-night comedy/talk-show. Often, Dave would go on location or to the phone lines to play pranks. Some famous features of the show include the "Top Ten... See full summary »
After several guest hosting appearances on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, Dave was given his own morning talk-show. This show included a full orchestra, news breaks, and a cast of ... See full summary »
There was always speculation about who would succeed Carson in the "Tonight" chair. A holding deal NBC had with David Letterman in 1980 fueled speculation that he might be in line to succeed Carson. Others presumed to be in line with Letterman at the time included such names as Richard Dawson and Burt Reynolds. But Carson himself seemed to be sending signals about what he though of Letterman. Unlike previous heirs apparent, whom Carson tended to freeze out, Letterman seemed to have ingratiated himself to Carson. And Carson even dropped Letterman's name on the show in his April 8, 1981 monologue.m See more »
[from his "What Democracy Means To Me" monologue - September 11, 1991]
To me, democracy means placing trust in the little guy, giving the fruits of nationhood to those who built the nation. Democracy means anyone can grow up to be president, and anyone who doesn't grow up can be vice president.
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Whenever Carson added a skit to an episode, the "Mighty Carson Art Players" would be announced as guest stars. See more »
Carson and company helped lay the foundation for contemporary topical humor in the US. From '62 to '92, the most significant pitches for movies, books and live appearances on the part of actors, authors, politicians and every other kind of luminary came before America and the world at Carson's desk. This show probably experienced an unrepeatable level of success.
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