A Critical Look at the History of Late Night

  • PLEASE FOLLOW THE RETROIST

With all the late night TV shenanigans that have been going on lately, I have seen a bunch of great pieces on the web and in print about this history of late night TV. My favorite online work is this piece from WGMU’s Beware of the Blog, called “The Late Night Distemper of Our Times”, that takes a hard look at the many bad decisions that went on in the late 1950s on networks trying to tinker around with winning formulas in order to find more “win”. I especially enjoy the part about the Jerry Lewis Show, which just might be the Heaven’s Gate of talk shows. Great stuff.

jerry lewis show

The Late Night Distemper of Our Times [@] Beware of the Blog


2 Responses to A Critical Look at the History of Late Night

  1. Drahken says:

    *scratches head* What “late night shenanigans” are you talking about? ( I never liked late night talk shows, and haven’t watched any network TV in untold ages, though I usually wind up hearing about major events in TV 2nd or 3rd hand online. Conan obrien getting fired for example.)

    Interestingly, I was just watching an episode of the colgate hour, hosted by martin & lewis online yesterday. I wonder if that, combined with the appearance of this article, is sufficient for my “am I psychic” thread? :p

  2. The Retroist says:

    Its much more entertaining if your into the shows, but I still think this is a great read

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Late_Shift_(book)

    Talks about the fight for The Tonight Show between Letterman and Leno.

    I would say it is psychic enough :)

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