Review: The new Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon aims for Nickelodeon’s viewers

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February 22, 2014– By Steven E. Greer

The new Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon completed its first week. Ratings were high, around 7-Million, thanks to A-listers as guests. However, the short segments which actually featured just Jimmy Fallon were cringe provoking.

Mr. Fallon extensively relies on physical comedy and impersonations, but he is not a very good impersonator. He does a good Jerry Seinfeld, which also sounds like his Bob Costas and many of his other attempts. Mr. Fallon is 40-years old with a slight comb-over to conceal is receding hairline, but he is still doing the same comedy that he did in the late 90’s on Saturday Night Live.

The new Tonight Show, which was made possible by Lorne Michaels of Saturday Night Live fame, looks more like a lame G-rated SNL than the Tonight Show, with its use of sketches and skits. But they are not live sketches, or even taped to live. One skit featured Fallon, Will Ferrell, and Michelle Obama. It was played to the studio audience on monitors as a pre-filmed skit, and was simply a goofy parody of adolescent girls. In fact, many of Fallon’s skits target young girls, as if they want the Nickelodeon viewers to switch over to The Tonight Show.

Fallon’s opening monologue of jokes, as usual, is still devoid of any political satire. His new 11:30 jokes are just less controversial versions of his bland 12:30 jokes.

The interviews are the worst part of the show. Mr. Fallon makes no connection with the guest. Instead, he nervously says “That’s great” all the time, and laughs at anything the guest says.

This Tonight Show charade was orchestrated by the Axis of Evil alliance between Ari Emanuel, the head of WME talent agency and most feared man in Hollywood, and Lorne Michaels, the most powerful man in the last-place Comcast-NBC-Universal organization. Ari’s client, Conan O’Brien, failed on his Tonight Show, and Leno took over. So now, Ari is exacting revenge by booting Leno for a second time.

Lorne Michaels is expanding beyond the increasingly unfunny and irrelevant SNL with this latest Tonight Show, and also the Late Show, now hosted by Lorne’s Seth Meyers, and other NBC SitComs, such as Thirty Rock. Lorne is simply spinning off shows that feature former SNL stars.

When Ari’s star clients, such as Justin Timberlake, would host Lorne’s SNL, Ari would be in the actual audience, which was an unusual move. The two men clearly saw an opportunity in the crisis at NBC, being in last place and run by naive Hollywood outsiders at Comcast, and they seized upon it. Ari’s brother, Rahm, famously said during the global financial collapse, “No good crisis should go to waste.”.

After this first week of the Jimmy Fallon Tonight Show, when all of the A-listers have been used up, and Fallon begins to dip into the Justin Timberlake bag time after time, will ratings slip down to Conan O’Brien levels? They certainly will, as sure as the sun sets. Those first week 7-Million viewers were tuning in to see a train wreck.

If Jay Leno and David Lettermen were smart, they would team up for the last few years of Letterman’s tenure, and run The Tonight Show’s new fraudulent host off the air. It would only be fair. An eye for an eye. All’s fair in love, war, and TV.


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