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As a transplanted Brit in America, I’m having something of a hard time getting my head around this Late Night debacle.

Unlike most American television, late night talk shows – the Conans, the Lettermans, the Carsons (he’s the one who’s dead, right?) – never really made it out to the rest of the world.

The first, and biggest, reason for this is that the shows tend to be vehicles for movie stars to promote their latest project: movies that probably have different release dates outside the US. Watching Ben Stiller talk about a movie that we won’t be able to see for six months isn’t so much entertaining as annoying.

The second reason is that, to my eye and ear at least, most of the shows are astonishingly unfunny. I mean, really. The men are paid millions – tens of millions – of dollars and given armies of writers to be hilarious and yet they still have to hire a sidekick to laugh at their punchlines. Hell, one of them – is it Leno? – even has a drum rimshot to telegraph when we’re supposed to laugh. It’s about as pathetic as me hiring some guy to add a ‘LOL’ comment to all of my posts on TechCrunch. Which come to think of it isn’t a bad idea.

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  • Nigel

    LOL

    (The invoice is in the post)

  • Edward Asiedu

    Paul,

    Actually they used to have Jay Leno on CNBC Europe (on Sky TV) and his monologues were hilarious if you had any sense of current events in the US. Unfortunately, his time slot got replaced with Conan O’Brien, whose humour I really don’t get.

    Alas, I’m happy Conan’s been shafted because I can have Jay Leno back on CNBC! You should check him out.

  • http://www.enginee.rs Ivan Trajkovic

    now you really made me laugh! :)

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