Day: September 10, 2009

Meet Jay Leno’s comedy correspondents and what they’ll bring to NBC primetime

Perhaps you have seen the incessant NBC promotions for The Jay Leno Show, promising unprecedented comedy in the 10 o'clock hour for American TV viewers? (If you have a TV, then of course you have, and I wonder if the people in the Central and Mountain time zones get their own ads that say 9 p.m., or if they're just confused? That last part may be rhetorical) Leno has done a lot of press to promote it this summer, from the official TCA "tour," to traveling to various NBC affiliates for promos and interviews, to a conference call earlier this week. We've gotten the message. And the conventional wisdom has been NBC is willing to bet on five hours of comedy as a cheaper option without the promise of big ratings. But. Wait. Just. One. Second. Five hours of comedy. Much of it stand-up, or taped segments produced and starring stand-up comedians. In primetime! This is a much bigger deal. Jerry Seinfeld, tapped to be Leno's first guest on Monday's debut, has been taking it seriously enough that he has rehearsed his stand-up material several times this week in New York City comedy clubs. After all, The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour in the late 1960s only aired once a week. So was Sid Caesar's Caesar's Hour; Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In; The Milton Berle Show; even The Jack Paar Program that some...

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Can you guess? Larry the Cable Guy’s 10 favorite comedians

While you were dressed to the nines yesterday, Larry the Cable Guy was uploading a new video to the YouTubes, in which he sat in a chair and read aloud his list of his 10 favorite comedians, and told us why he likes them better than anyone else. You probably can guess one or two right off the bat, particularly if you are a fan of Larry's. Have you made your guesses? OK. Pencils down. Roll the clip!  (via Comedy.com) After the jump, another clip from Larry the Cable Guy to plug his upcoming Comedy Central CD, Tailgate Party, which comes out Sept....

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In other comedy news…

Ellen DeGeneres getting hired by American Idol might have been the biggest news you heard overnight, but it wasn't the only thing happening in the past week in comedy news. To wit: Mandi Bierly at EW's PopWatch talked to Bruce McCulloch about the new Kids in the Hall miniseries, Death Comes to Town, which has been filming in Canada. It'll air in January on CBC in Canada (and most likely sometime in 2010 on U.S. cable TV, once they get a deal done). Related: Mark McKinney has been blogging about it all on the Kids in the Hall Facebook page. Slightly related? Dave Foley has a series called "The Sensible Traveler with Bobby Fargo" that you can watch on Babelgum. Lots of styles and profiles of late-night TV in the mainstream media. For instance, Jay Leno on the cover of this past week's Time magazine. New York mag, meanwhile, put David Letterman on the cover with a profile inside, plus an edited interview between Jimmy Fallon and Dick Cavett. Speaking of Letterman, Jezebel had a lengthy interview this week with comedian Merrill Markoe. And if you'd like to hear me talk out of Alison Rosen's phone, and have two of New York's Funniest Reporters chit the chat, then tune in to the latest installment of The Daily...

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Ellen DeGeneres named “permanent” judge on Idol

Just when you were thinking, the only way American Idol ever could replace Paula Abdul would be to find someone who is deliberately funny, well, they did done gone did that. Ellen DeGeneres announced the news last night during the taping of her daytime talk show that she had been named the new fourth judge on Idol. Click here for Ellen's Twitter announcement from last night, as well as the clip from Ellen that'll air today. DeGeneres is known for loving to dance, but is not a musical comedian. Does that matter? She said she hopes to be "the people's judge," which means we could be in for a lot of that-song-had-a-good-beat-I-could-dance-to-it quips, but hopefully not. I'm sure it'll get people to tune in. But isn't the whole point of the show to have the people be the ultimate judges by calling and texting millions of votes each week? I suppose if Ellen got an actual vote on who stayed and who left, then it'd be worth debating in more detail. Instead, I'll just post some related videos for you. Here's one from TMZ (of all places), trying to act like actual investigators by digging up this clip of Ellen chatting with Idol's Simon Cowell in May about the prospect of job openings on the judging panel. And here's a clip from back in the day of Ellen singing...

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