Sunday, May 24, 2015

Final episode of "Late Night with David Letterman", May 20th, 2015

It is possible that my recollections of Carson's final Tonight Show, twenty-three years ago, are inaccurate. Did he show any clips? Were there any taped bits of celeb's or presidents or anybody sending Johnny off with a gag or a tribute or a good-bye or anything like that? If there was any of that stuff I don't remember it. All I recall is Johnny sitting on a stool center stage, very low key, less "on" than usual, reminiscing and thanking everybody in a very genuine, human way. I guess maybe I was expecting something more like that from Dave's final show, which I guess was sort of an unrealistic expectation. But anyway, I'm not complaining or criticizing. I could not have enjoyed the final episode of "Late Night with David Letterman" (aka "The Late Show with David Letterman") more than I did. Very, very funny stuff. And this is a truly epic event in the history of television. A real "end of an era" no doubt about it. The appearances by the presidents in the opening and then all the big A-list celeb's doing the Top Ten List couldn't have been more appropriate. The clips were hilarious, although of course I would've preferred to see more of the NBC stuff. And then that final hyper speed clip package, with the Foo Fighters rocking live, was the best such thing I've ever seen put together. In fact, I even got a bit emotional as the old early '80's clips flew past. I LOVED Dave's show when I was in high school and college.  

So anyway, that's that. Like I said before, I've watched him more than a handful of times this century, but it was still somehow a comfort to know that he was still on the air. A link to my youth. A link to the days when I used to watch, and enjoy, a lot more TV. It's interesting to me to contrast the similarities to when Johnny quit in '92, Carson had been doing the show since before I was born ---- he had simply ALWAYS BEEN ON for me. When he ended his 30 year run I was in my mid-twenties.

With Letterman, by contrast, I actually started watching him within months of the first episode of "Late Night", when I was in high school, so I can actually remember when he was THE BRAND NEW GUY, doing something completely wild and new and different. Now, 33 years later, he's been copied ad nauseam (literally, I assure you), he's an institution, he's nearly 70 and I'm nearly 50.

Anyway, I guess I don't have anything terribly profound to say about it. These last three blog posts have just been my observations, my random thoughts and opinions. Methinks that I may very well now forget about "Throwing the Ball to Naturally" for another years or more.


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