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Old 05-14-2012, 01:31 PM   #1
Steveknj
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Johnny Carson: King of Late Night - Anyone gonna watch?

This is on tonight on PBS American Masters.

To me Carson has always been one of the most interesting people ever on TV. While I was never a huge late night fan, I did enjoy watching Johnny from time to time. The number of comedians he gave their first break to is in the dozens if not hundreds.
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Old 05-14-2012, 02:53 PM   #2
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Tivo set! Thanks for the heads-up.
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Old 05-14-2012, 02:55 PM   #3
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Yeah, me too thanks!
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Old 05-14-2012, 04:12 PM   #4
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http://www.thedailybeast.com/newswee...ars-later.html

I actually talked to Johnny from the audience.
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Old 05-14-2012, 06:33 PM   #5
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Didn't know about it. Thanks! Got it.
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Old 05-14-2012, 06:49 PM   #6
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Thank you for the reminder!
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and elsewhere
Play-by-play announcer at .... let me get back to you
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Old 05-14-2012, 07:08 PM   #7
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I saw a preview. It does not look terribly complimentary to Johnny.
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Old 05-14-2012, 07:23 PM   #8
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My Dish EPG shows it repeating at 2 a.m. saturday 5/19. Tonights showing has too many conflicts.

Incidentally if you remember, In the 1960's prior to the tonight show Johnny hosted "who do you trust" and "do you trust your wife", Ed McMahon was with him even then.

After graduating high school I was an on-foot messenger in Manhattan. The two shows were taped from the little theatre on West 43rd st. They always handed out tickets in the times square area. The audience warm-up always started the same way. Johnny would greet the audience holding a half full styrofoam cup of coffee, come to the lip of the stage and hand it to an audience member. I wish I still had the cup.

Meanwhile Ed would be reading a show introduction from a single page. Johnny set fire to the end of the script as a gag. I attended the tapings many times and the routine never changed.
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Old 05-14-2012, 08:48 PM   #9
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Thanks for the heads up!
I'll definitely watch this.

To me, Carson was the best at his craft on his show.
Off stage? From what I've read he seemed like a troubled and difficult person to deal with.
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Old 05-14-2012, 09:45 PM   #10
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of course I am.. I watch most American Experience shows.. at least eventually (and usually faster than realtime).

It would be cool (but I doubt it'll happen) if they somehow found some of the 'lost' shows from the decades they erased (most before the late 1970s IIRC).. and not just show the same Ed Ames clip we've seen a million times.
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Old 05-14-2012, 10:47 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by YCantAngieRead View Post
I saw a preview. It does not look terribly complimentary to Johnny.
Just curious, do you prefer a show such as this be complimentary or honest?
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Old 05-15-2012, 06:32 AM   #12
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I prefer it to be neither a hatchet-job nor a panegyric. Hopefully this one will simply be accurate.
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Old 05-15-2012, 06:55 AM   #13
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I prefer it to be neither a hatchet-job nor a panegyric. Hopefully this one will simply be accurate.
I learned a new word today
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Old 05-15-2012, 07:11 AM   #14
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I learned a new word today
I was torn between "panegyric" and "hagiography."
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Old 05-15-2012, 07:22 AM   #15
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I haven't seen it yet, but from the NY Times review, it appears to be fair. You'll have folks (Drew Carey is an example) who glow about how Johnny gave them a break and others who will talk about how difficult he was off camera.

One think I always remember about when Carson was king was how he would do cameos, usually uncredited on shows from time to time and it was usually a big deal when he did, because of who he was.
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Old 05-15-2012, 08:54 AM   #16
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I've only watched the first hour and thought it was pretty good. No real new info however.
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Old 05-15-2012, 09:13 AM   #17
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Just curious, do you prefer a show such as this be complimentary or honest?
Honest, of course. Always. I was just making an observation.

You don't often see documentaries of beloved deceased celebrities that take the honest route.
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Old 05-15-2012, 09:15 AM   #18
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I had a night shift job where I could watch TV in the late 70's. I tried watching the show but it was interrupted very many times by commercials in the middle of a conversation and then the conversation obviously kept going during the commercial and did not continue afterwards. I gave up after just a few episodes.
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Old 05-15-2012, 09:31 AM   #19
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Watched it last night. Really good profile on the man and they balanced the his troubles and accomplishments quite well. Also a nice collection of comedians and talk show hosts lending their input.

It was pretty apparent how virtually every still photo they used of Carson in the first half of the piece showed him with a cigarette in his hand.

The only thing that was hard to watch was watching Jay Leno talk about Carson. Argh. Yes, they got along at times, and yes Leno talked from a comedian's perspective appearing on the Tonight Show, but when Jay chimed in on Carson after he left the tonight show? C'mon. He hated you, Jay. He never forgave Jay for Jay stupidly taking the advice of his agent Helen Kushnick and not thanking and acknowledging Johnny on his first episode. Just own it like Joan Rivers has. It's pretty telling that Carson wrote jokes for Dave and appeared on Dave's show, yet he never did a cameo on Leno's version of the Tonight Show.

just seeing many of the old openings and sets brought back a lot of memories. Good piece.
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Old 05-15-2012, 10:03 AM   #20
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I was good. The only two late night hosts to like each other were Johnny and David. A lot of hate with the others.

I was kind of surprised how emotional Drew Cary was. You could also see Letterman was. And Conan doesn't hold any "grudges".

He left this world a great man.
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Old 05-15-2012, 10:07 AM   #21
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I was kind of surprised how emotional Drew Cary was. You could also see Letterman was. And Conan doesn't hold any "grudges".

He left this world a great man.
Agreed. I was watching this, and my 16 yo daughter was in the room. She doesn't have a clue who Johnny was, but she was drawn in just by all of the kind words from all of the celebs who's careers he'd launched.

One thing that wasn't mentioned: Whenever Letterman told a joke that Johnny faxed in, he finished it with a golf swing.
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Old 05-15-2012, 10:10 AM   #22
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Yeah, I remember after Johnny died, the very next episode Letterman's entire monologue was made up of jokes Johnny faxed in to him over the last few months. Pretty nice touch.
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Old 05-15-2012, 11:08 AM   #23
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IMHO the greatest thing about Johnny is how he always made his guest look good. He knew how to pull back and let his guest have the spotlight.

So many other hosts want to draw the audience's attention back to themselves.
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Old 05-15-2012, 04:19 PM   #24
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I just watched it today and thought it was excellent. IMO, it was not slanted either way. It seemed very even-handed and honest.

I didn't actually know how very talented he was! I didn't know he could sing and play musical instruments. Didn't know about the magic. Good show. I was surprised to see that it was 2 hours and figured - no biggie...I'll watch it in an hour and a half. oopsie! No commercials. (since it was PBS I expected a couple long money drive segments) But I loved the entire 2 hours.
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Old 05-15-2012, 07:44 PM   #25
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Is this rerunning? Now I'm kinda wishing I'd watched it (intended to and then flat forgot.)
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Old 05-15-2012, 07:57 PM   #26
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Is this rerunning? Now I'm kinda wishing I'd watched it (intended to and then flat forgot.)
I just checked the Tivo guide and I have it airing at 4am on both SD & HD PBS channels, Friday at 9pm (both), and Monday 5/21 4am (both).

I don't know if every market is the same, however, but that'll give you a place to start.
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Old 05-15-2012, 09:00 PM   #27
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I just checked the Tivo guide and I have it airing at 4am on both SD & HD PBS channels, Friday at 9pm (both), and Monday 5/21 4am (both).

I don't know if every market is the same, however, but that'll give you a place to start.
Thank you.

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Old 05-15-2012, 10:12 PM   #28
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Carson was the best at his craft
His "craft" had a total workforce of one; he was unique. Not the most important or significant role a human could aspire to, but it was something nobody had ever done before or ever will.

Steve Allen was more creative, as was Letterman later on; Paar was far more interesting. But "The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson" was an incredibly entertaining one-time phenomenon.
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Old 05-15-2012, 11:03 PM   #29
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I just watch it and loved it. I laughed and cried. He was truly one of a kind.
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Old 05-16-2012, 12:47 AM   #30
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Thanks for the heads up!

I had no idea this show was on. TiVo's set to record it.
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