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CBS and The Late Late Show Time-Slot

By Edited Dec 20, 2015 1 7
laurie_the late late show_picspam1 (Taken August 11th, 2013)
Credit: Olga Alexandra on flickr / Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic

I've been waiting for CBS to announce who will be filling in the The Late Late Show time-slot. Are you wondering too?

In a July 24th article by Alex Weprin, he wrote that Craig Ferguson told Larry King he didn't know who should replace him and mentioned, "I don’t think they [CBS] do either, to be fair."[1]

There was some buzz in May that Joel McHale was replacing Craig Ferguson - but this turned out to be based on a photograph of McHale with Julie Chen and Les Moonves, the president of CBS.[2] Joel McHale cleared up the rumour stating he wasn't interested in a late night gig and added, "I'm only funny once a week."[3]

When David Letterman announced his retirement, I scrambled to put together five women and five men who could try to replace Dave. Before I knew it, Stephen Colbert was named as the new host.

Regarding the 12:30 time-slot, Nina Tassler, CBS entertainment president, told the Television Critics Association:

"We’re looking at it through a very different lens. There is a knee-jerk reaction to go for a traditional behind the desk format, but we’re looking at the comic world, maybe the political world. We’re keeping an open mind. We’re doing our homework. We want to make the right decision."[4]

The Comedians

One of the first guys to mention he's the man to fill Ferguson's shoes is Norm Macdonald. He began campaigning and there's been over 30,000 tweets recommending him for the job.[5] On Conan O'Brien's show, he performed a live, 1-minute audition which featured Fred Willard (shown next).

Norm Macdonald's Audition

Another Canadian?

Sure. What about Scott Faulconbridge? He's currently touring Canada, but I think he'd also be brilliant. I recently asked him if he'd be interested in hosting a late night talk show and he said:

"Yeah, but hosting a show like that is huge. To be out there night-after-night. Don't know if after 3 months I'd be wanting to do it - but I'd love to work on a show like that."

Up next, Rob Kemp interviews Scott Faulconbridge who says he enjoys stand-up and improv. Mr. Faulconbridge has a wonderful voice for radio or TV. I think he'd be great as a talk show host.

The Rob Kemp Show - Scott Faulconbridge

What About Kim Cattrall?

I looked into what she's up to and I doubt she's available. Lucky for us in Canada, Kim Cattrall is starring in a new HBO Canada show Sensitive Skin which premiered July 20th, 2014. Don McKeller directs and stars in the series as well.

Next, CityTV tells us more about what Kim Cattrall and Don McKeller have been working on.

CityTV talks to Kim Cattrall and Don McKeller

about the new HBO Canada show "Sensitive Skin"

How About a Brian Linehan-type Show?

Brian Linehan hosted City Lights, a one-on-one style interview format which delved into the career of an actor or celebrity on the show. It ran in syndication from 1973 to 1989 in Canada and the US.[6]

Brian Linehan was often lauded by guests as "having done his homework" and they were surprised at how much he knew beforehand. Of course his questions reflected that and I thoroughly enjoyed every City Lights episode I saw. In the late '90s he hosted a show aptly titled Linehan.

Up next is Brian Linehan's 1989 interview with the late John Candy (who starred in Uncle Buck). In 2001, Mr. Linehan was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and passed away in 2004. It might be hard to find someone with Linehan's talent, but I'd stay up to watch a similar program in The Late Late Show's time-slot.

City Lights with Brian Linehan

Interview with John Candy (1989)

Bring Back the Show "Comics!"

Or a similar stand-up comedy show

On Monday nights in the '90s I always looked forward to a half hour show simply called Comics![7] It aired on CBC from 1993 - 1999 and it featured one comedian per show. It was produced by Sandra Faire and Joe Bodolai. I was fortunate to be an audience member of the show once.

Up next, enjoy a clip I found on YouTube of Jeremy Hotz. Now this is the type of show that would keep me up to watch CBS after midnight. Warning: Contains some foul language.

Jeremy Hotz

Craig Ferguson Is NOT Retiring

He just wants to do something else

Craig Ferguson made it clear that he's not retiring. When asked by Larry King if he'd do another talk show Ferguson replied, "Yeah, I would, but not right away. I would do another one. I just don’t want to do this one anymore."[1]

Interestingly enough, Time writer James Poniewozik (and others) have also made the case for something other than a talk show in the 12:30 time-slot. He reported that viewership for the 11:35 pm shows has been declining over the years and even more dramatically at 12:35.[8]

Some ideas tossed around include:

  • sports review show
  • political show (which Nina Tassler mentioned)
  • panel discussion or debate show
  • targeted-interest program such as music, travel, or other lifestyle show

I'd like to add that a documentary program like Biography[9] would also be a good choice.

Up next are a few brilliant skits by Craig Ferguson. Admittedly, I rarely caught his show - but I do know quite a few people who watch him regularly. He's incredibly popular with Canadian audiences.

An Interesting Poll in a Canadian Magazine

74% of Canadians would **** him (over Jimmy Fallon):

Real Craig as Larry King interviews Fake Craig

Fake Craig is played brilliantly by John Reynolds who works for Ferguson. This is a must-see:

For my UK readers: Craig Ferguson as the Queen

Former President Bush enjoys tea time with the Queen:

Craig Ferguson speaks to Robin Williams

A hilarious short interview:

And check out Craig Ferguson (as himself) being

interviewed by the real Larry King:

American on Purpose: The Improbable Adventures of an Unlikely Patriot

by Craig Ferguson

American on Purpose: The Improbable Adventures of an Unlikely Patriot RoseWrites 2014-07-27 5.0 0 5
5/5

American on Purpose: The Improbable Adventures of an Unlikely Patriot

by Craig Ferguson

American on Purpose: The Improbable Adventures of an Unlikely Patriot
Amazon Price: $14.99 $6.35 Buy Now
(price as of Dec 20, 2015)
Now you can have Craig Ferguson (in a kilt) in your bedroom all the time. This book covers his journey from the mean streets of Glasgow, Scotland to the promised land of Hollywood. You might be surprised to learn that Craig was a construction worker, a punk rock musician, a bouncer, and a modern dancer. Fortunately, he overcame a drug and alcohol addiction (which almost led to a suicide attempt). Happily, we'll still be enjoying more of Craig (somehow, somewhere) after The Late Late Show.
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Comments

Jul 27, 2014 12:50pm
RLoftis4
I'd like to see Norm MacDonald take the job myself. It's good that he's been campaigning, and hopefully the network suits are smart enough to consider him.
Jul 27, 2014 1:25pm
RoseWrites
Yes, I agree. It's odd that it's taking so long to hear anything official from CBS. Thanks for dropping by and commenting.
Jul 28, 2014 7:56pm
RLoftis4
You're welcome. I wonder whatever happened to Ferguson's predecessor, Craig Kilborn? I bet most people don't even remember he was originally the host of "The Daily Show."
Jul 30, 2014 4:38pm
RoseWrites
This comment has been deleted.
Jul 30, 2014 4:38pm
RoseWrites
This comment has been deleted.
Jul 30, 2014 4:40pm
RoseWrites
Good question, all I could find out was that Kilborn was a guest host Nov. 6 - 8th, 2013 of "The Artie Lange Show." In 2011, he played a villain in a TV show "Chuck" during its last season (for one episode). And prior to that, he had his own show "The Kilborn File" which only ran for 6 weeks.

Sorry about the deleted comments - they were duplicates.
Aug 6, 2014 12:43pm
vicdillinger
Ferguson is a great talent who will be missed & he is definitely the funniest of a relatively unfunny late-night lot (a format whose time is definitely played out and tired). I've always thought Ferguson's Larry King was brutally hysterical (the uncontrolled, floppy arms, etc.) Yeah, I vote for that danged Canadian Norm MacDonald to take Craig's place. Big thumb's up, Rosalita.
Aug 6, 2014 2:26pm
RoseWrites
Yeah, I think his Larry King impersonation is hilarious too - esp. those arms flopping about and his tongue movements. I have a feeling that CBS will opt for something else since (like you stated) the format of late night talk shows is tired. I sure hope to see a variety of talented comedians featured (somehow) in that time-slot. Guess time will tell. Thanks so much for checking out my article and thumbing it Vic, means more than you know.
Aug 7, 2014 11:20pm
RoseWrites
Addendum: Purportedly, a CBS "production source" said that James Corden will replace Craig Ferguson. However, both Corden's rep and CBS officials declined to comment. (I'll await an official announcement from CBS).
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Bibliography

  1. Alex Weprin "Craig Ferguson wants to do another talk show." Capital New York. 24/07/2014. 26/07/2014 <Web >
  2. Doug Sibor "UPDATE: Joel McHale Is Apparently Replacing Craig Ferguson on the "Late Late Show"." Complex. 14/05/2014. 26/07/2014 <Web >
  3. Ethan Sacks "Joel McHale on whether he'd take CBS 'Late Late Show' job: 'F--- no!'." NY Daily News. 30/06/2014. 26/07/2014 <Web >
  4. Debra Birnbaum "CBS’ Nina Tassler Talks ‘Big Bang’ Contracts, ‘Good Wife’ Snub and Latenight." Variety. 17/07/2014. 26/07/2014 <Web >
  5. Bill Carter "Campaigning for a Desk Job in Late Night | Norm Macdonald Wants Craig Ferguson’s Show." NY Times. 25/05/2014. 26/07/2014 <Web >
  6. "Brian Linehan." Wikipedia. 27/07/2014 <Web >
  7. "Comics!." Wikipedia. 27/07/2014 <Web >
  8. James Poniewozik "Why Replace Craig Ferguson At All?." Time. 29/04/2014. 27/07/2014 <Web >
  9. "Biography (TV Series)." Wikipedia. 27/07/2014 <Web >

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