Late-Night Mess Is Our Fault

When you can Google what's going on, why watch Tonight Show ?
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 18, 2010 10:38 AM CST
Television talk show host Conan O'Brien hosts a NY Comedy Festival Event.   (AP Photo/Evan Agostini)

(Newser) – It’s fun to point fingers, but the “late-night fratricide” at NBC isn't Jeff Zucker's fault, Leno's, or Conan's: It's ours. The real culprit is our own disaffection with traditional TV, writes David Carr, who's been following the fracas closely—on his computer. We're so bombarded by news that The Tonight Show and its ilk increasingly seem beside the point, no matter who is delivering the monologue. "Why wait for Jay or Conan to show you Mel Gibson's mug shot when it’s there for the clicking on TMZ?"

“In its glory days, The Tonight Show served as a search engine on culture,” Carr writes in the New York Times, “letting us know which politician had made a gaffe, which corporate evildoer had been caught doing evil and which starlet had experienced a wardrobe malfunction.” But “now the search engine is the search engine,” and the show itself is just another term. “Today, if magic happens, you don’t have to wait for the show to enjoy the moment.”

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