LETTERMAN / ELLEN

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This past week, David Letterman, my favorite talk show host ever, and probably one of my favorite media personalities, announced that he’d retire next year. I wrote a piece for Slate about why Ellen Degeneres would be a worthy, even perfect, successor:

“There are no jokes on Letterman. His monologues from the desk are networks of inference, nudge, and innuendo. Watch him even now: He’s barely articulate, but he is communicating. The anachronistic gesture of drinking from the desk—it’s 11:30, time for a drink, but Letterman, unlike us, is still at work!—showcases, above all, the chaotic potential of television at that time of night. There is no “after hours” on network television. There is no time when it’s-just-you-and-me. But there is, as Letterman knows, the possibility of faking it.”

“Dancing and Drinking the Late Night Away”

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