Comedy talk shows will tape without an audience as coronavirus precaution

Daytime talk shows based in New York City such as The View and Wendy Williams began filming episodes this week without a regular studio audience as a precaution for the COVID-19 coronavirus.

And now the late-night comedy talkers are following suit.

Starting this week with Full Frontal with Samantha Bee, and only Bee, on TBS tonight.

The other late-night shows in NYC, from CBS (The Late Show with Stephen Colbert), Comedy Central (The Daily Show with Trevor Noah), HBO (Last Week Tonight with John Oliver), NBC (The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, Late Night with Seth Meyers) and Showtime (Desus & Mero) all plan to film episodes in the coming week(s) without studio audiences.

Although they will still have crew and staff on hand, who can serve as an ad hoc audience.

Which is what many smaller-budget cable talkers have dealt with for years.

Fallon does have experience with this unique situation, too, having filmed episodes of Late Night with The Roots and just crew in October 2012 in the immediate fallout from Superstorm Sandy when it hit NYC.

Sean L. McCarthy

Editor and publisher since 2007, when he was named New York's Funniest Reporter. Former newspaper reporter at the New York Daily News, Boston Herald and smaller dailies and community papers across America. Loves comedy so much he founded this site.

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