Favorite Television of 2010 - Special Place of Honor: Late Night Edition
The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson
In terms of late night television, the year seems to belong to Conan. And yes, his last week of shows at NBC are some of the best shows in late night I’ve ever seen, let alone 2010. The whole feud seemed to invigorate everyone with a show after 11pm, and Jimmy Fallon really came into his own. Late night has a tendency to get a little tedious and uneventful, but it really seemed like everyone was on their A game this year.
But then there’s Craig. Feud or no feud, he brings the funny more consistently than anyone else out there. I’ve talked about why I think he’s the best there is before and in addition to being the only genuinely funny monologue around, the way he treats his guests is just refreshing. He rips up the pre-interview question cards before every guest, and just wings it, asking whatever happens to come to his mind. Which is why no matter who the guest is, whether I like them or dislike them, or have never even heard of them, I always give it a shot. And he rarely ever misses.
He barely ever does sketches, has no band, and any sort of pre-taped bits are few and far between. He likes to joke about how his show has no money, but I think that’s part of why it’s awesome. It’s literally just him, standing in front of the camera, entertaining you for 45 minutes a night. I have no idea how he does it, but he manages to pull it off every time. It’s such a boring concept, the late night talk show, but I don’t think I’ve ever been bored watching him.
And this year especially has been great - having him gleefully watch NBC crash and burn, Geoff Peterson, his sit down with Stephen Fry, the Doctor Who special, Secretariat and his freaking Peabody award - I always get frustrated when I come across people who don’t really give him a chance (I used to be one of them; for the longest time he was just that Scottish dude who used to be on the Drew Carey Show) because he’s not as hip as Jimmy Fallon or as absurdly weird as Conan, or even because he’s on CBS, the old people station. Comedy is the most subjective thing in the universe, so I understand his particular brand of humor isn’t for everyone, but I really do believe if more people gave him a shot (although I do know he regularly beats Jimmy in the ratings), they’d fall in love just like I did.
(and in case I got your interest, there is a kind soul who uploads every show he does on YouTube every day. So you have no excuse to miss him! Heaven knows I barely ever watch his show when it actually airs!)
Tomorrow: the Top Ten start!
Previously on Favorite Television of 2010