CBS (ended 2015)

Late-night shake-up! David Letterman, the occasionally curmudgeonly and always gap-toothed host of Late Show With David Letterman, has announced that he will retire from the CBS talk show (and probably all late-night television) in 2015. Dave, as I call him, has helmed Late Show for nearly 21 years, since August of 1993; prior to that, he'd manned the desk of NBC's Late Night with David Letterman for 11 years, since 1982. Those two tenures combined have earned Dave the distinction of being the longest-running late-night talk-show host in TV history, surpassing the legendary Johnny Carson, who hosted NBC's Tonight Show for 30 years. 

The news was broken by Mike Mills, the bassist for R.E.M. Wait, what? Yep, R.E.M. was taping tonight's show in New York when Letterman announced his retirement to the studio audience. 

CBS later confirmed the news with an official statement, and has released the video of Letterman announcing his departure:

Dave has always been my favorite of the late-nighters after Carson (Johnny, not Daly), and with Jay Leno already gone, the late-night landscape is going to look pretty alien next year. Now the questions begin: Who will replace Dave? For as good as Craig Ferguson is in the 12:35am slot behind Dave, it's difficult to imagine CBS promoting him to 11:35pm. And as some media folks have already noted on Twitter, Conan O'Brien, Jon Stewart, and Stephen Colbert's contracts are all set to expire either later this year or next year. Hmmmm... I'd guess that CBS will shower Stewart with buckets of money until he says yes. But c'mon, we all know who we really want to see in the chair. This guy:

Who do YOU think should replace Dave?


Previously Aired Episode

AIRED ON 5/20/2015

Season 22 : Episode 05.20.15

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I cried my eyes out at hearing these news and I'm pinching myself as to wether believe it or not. I guess I expected his retirement, but now is too soon. Wouldn't it ever be too soon?
Let's enjoy a golden year with Dave and we'll always keep a good memory in our hearts.
I also like Jon Stewart and Conan, but Dave is irreplaceable. CBS should stop the Late Show with his retirement.
Have a good life Dave. Thank you for your career, for your unique humor and for the excellent ode to NY that was LS w/ David Letterman.
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David Letterman was unfunny just like most late night hosts, plain and simple. This is fantastic news for me. I hope Craig Ferguson gets a promotion already! He's the best of the lot and is actually hilarious while giving off a genuine vibe.
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Graham Norton is still the best talk/chat show host.
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I've only seen a few episodes of his, but it surprises me no one here has thought to do what he does and have all guests out together like a house party with some friends. Letterman's replacement doing this would be a welcome change, if it works and having the right host.
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People still watch late night talk shows?
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I'm glad Dave stuck around long enough to outlast Jay Leno. He's earned his retirement. And once he's gone, I doubt he'll be back at the expense of others. Unlike some....
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You all know Jon Stewart did have a talk show once, right? It lasted like two years and got dismal ratings. He'll not go to CBS.

Ferguson might replace Letterman, but he'd likely have to change. I generally like him, but he hits and often misses with me.

The upset would be if Conan takes the job leaving TBS going, "wtf?".

A possible Apocalypse sign would be Leno coming back.

Please don't let it be Regis Philbin.

Louis C.K. won't get it , as CBS might be too wary of him and his language and/or topics of discussion. I don't think he's the interviewer type either. If he has done it, I've not seen it.

Can't think of anyone else at the moment. I am guessing it will be familiar, yet surprising in some way and the show may have more variety than what Letterman has offered.
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I love Craig & his show because, as he says, they're "Not Like Any Other Late Night Show". No band, hilarious robot skeleton sidekick, not-a-real-horse, his hair stylist & makeup artist dancing on stage during commercial breaks, and the occasional cooking segment, what's not to like? He doesn't interview pedestrians on the street, have people bring animals on the show, write weird letters or thank-you notes to celebrities on screen, or have a yes-man sidekick awkwardly standing on the sidelines or sitting in the guest chairs. The only thing I wish he'd do is have the Mythbusters on from time-to-time to do cool science experiments. Years ago Leno had a guy who made a fire tornado & used a garbage can to blow smoke rings across the audience. That was pretty cool.

I think Craig's lack of conformity will keep him from taking Dave's place. According to his autobiography he was up against 3 other guys to host the Late Late Show and even Craig himself thought it was long shot. He can get anyway with so much where he is now that he's have to do a lot things different to be on at 11:35.

One thing I'd like to see a late night show do is break the tradition of the desk & guest chairs.I like how Stewart's & Colbert's desk sit across from them at their big desks or a table in Colbert's case. Try putting the host behind a bar & have the guests sit on stools at the end of the bar or wherever would be the easiest to film. Maybe conduct interviews while sitting in lawn chairs, rocking chairs, or a porch swing.
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This will never happen but Ru Paul should totally be his replacement!!!!
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Now what we need are the top ten signs that David Letterman is too old and should've already retired...I'll get it started
NUMBER TEN: He was old enough to speak during the korean war....
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I don't think Stewart will be better on Late, but seeing as he's been at Daily for so long, I can see him taking on a new challenge (especially one which pays so well). But I think it should be Ellen DeGeneres. She would be both a creative departure and a great business move.
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Big mistake for Stew or Colbert to consider this jump, they are perfect where they are!
I dont necessarily think CK is all that funny in his show, but he may be ok in this genre.

I really could care less!
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Dave has always liked Conan. Those two have something in common. I wouldn't be surprised if this was planned for awhile. Conan on TBS was a lead in to him returning to a network. Stewart may be everyone's favorite, but I think he has aspiration for something much higher.
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Good riddance, should have left in the early 90s.
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In the 80s.. When Dave first started.. I don't know how many times he had me literally crying with laughter.. He was new face and he and his writers just hit you with all kinds of STUPID..No one will replace him to my satisfaction..But it would give my shot to Stewart..Conan is good and probably the right choice but Stewart would bring something fresh..IMO..
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All the best late night stuff is on Comedy Central. Go @midnight! (please don't take Chris Hardwick away, CBS)
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Me thinks Chelsea Handler's move this past Sunday makes much more sense now....

I think it's long overdue to have a female host on a major broadcast network. Joan Rivers on FOX was what thirty years ago?
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I don't see them replacing Letterman with a woman, it's too risky. I expect they will hire another white male
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What is this 1950? Maybe they'll get one of those fancy vaudeville performers to replace Dave when he leaves his program from the television box in the living room. My grandson will love it! It'll be the bees knees!
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This was the first guy that I really saw and liked in Late Night. Of course there's always the Carson exception, though he wasn't really on my generational level when I started getting allowed to stay up that late by my parents, but learned to appreciate his stuff later.

Seeing guys you grew up watching and liked retire and die (RIP Leslie Nielsen) . . . I feel.....older.
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It's kinda weird, but with Craig Ferguson you have the situation that neither his haters nor his fans want him to move to that timeslot. The haters for obvious reasons and the fans because they don't want him to change his wacky nature and his improv style...
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Didn't Letterman announce a retirement years ago and then change his mind? Maybe CBS should consider replacing The Late Show with a Ted Koppel Nightline-like news magazine show, or revive Current TV's Viewpoint with John Fugelsang and TV's Frank.
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You should google Tonight! After Dark. It's been done before.
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Love Letterman, and at 66 he could still go on hosting a talkshow. Please don't let Craig Ferguson replace him... Such a dirty old man, only thing he can do is talk about boobs, so many wasted interviews because of his filthy "humor"
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What kind of interviews were you hoping to see? The kind you can get on any other talk show? Also, you know nothing.
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I think late night talk shows have run their course.There was a time when they were cutting edge like early Letterman and O'Brien but when Leno took over The Tonight Show,he brought in a mediocre and boring vibe that spread to the other shows.I used to be a late night talk show junkie but these days,they simply put me to sleep.
Anyway,all the best to Letterman,he was always one of my favorites and I hope he enjoys his retirement!
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They've run their course so much that they're all over the place. Seem more alive than ever to me. Still surprised FOX hasn't gotten in the game yet, considering everyone else has.
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No, bad idea. Louis CK would open every show with a monologue about death and hopelessness and despair, then tell all his guests how worthless they are. If his FX show is any indication, we would also get gratuitous shots of his naked hairy butt.
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And every second of it would be glorious.
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i think Anyone from SNL alumni is a Candidate to host a late night show ,,
Specially those who write sketches and preform on stage like :

Darrell Hammond
Kevin Nealon
Jason Sudeikis
Dennis Miller
Amy Poehler
Kristen Wiig
Tina Fay
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Dennis Miller already had a late-night talk show 20 years ago. I might still have his interview with Rob Liefeld talking about Youngblood on VHS somewhere in my collection. Do we really want the return of the Orgasmanauts (or whatever that redubbed puppetmation bit was) at 11:35?
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Dennis Miller was very good on his HBO series though. To me, he's a very acquired taste. Much like watching Beowulf play chinese checkers with Scott Baio!
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Tina Fey!
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Let's see if Tina Fey makes it in the movies or not. But yeah, she'd be pretty awesome. I'd rather watch her than Jimmy Fallon.
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You know the only reason Dave waited till now was to say that he outlasted Leno. I was a big Leno fan, Jimmy Fallon is an okay replacement but I'm afraid that late night TV as we once knew it is now dead...RIP
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Go Louie!
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I think Seinfeld is the perfect choice, his humor is safe, Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee proves he has a nice dynamic interview style that could be great in late night, he has name recognition with the demographic that is likely to watch late night shows.

The only reason they wouldn't pick him would be if they decided to try to modernize their Late Night, in which case Stewart seems like a nice choice, even if I don't think he would do it. Colbert has his character, and I don't see it working for an hour every day, with a broader focus on pop culture, and I don't think Conan is willing to risk another network move.

That said, I hope they don't try to modernize it too much, that stuff is for later at night or more experimental networks.
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What's the deal with people rooting for Jon Stewart or Stephen Colbert to give their current shows up? They may use this whole Letterman-thing now to get some nice raises.

It would be a shame to see one of them leave. They are far too good for a simple network late night show.
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Honestly, who cares? Does anyone watch these shows anymore? We don't see new talent there, or get our daily news summary, and the "interviews" are total crap. I'd much rather see what's in my DVR queue.
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ooo that is a tough one. I think it should be Ferguson, but I don't think he is corporate enough for CBSs liking. If they let Stewart do the same type of show that is the Daily Show but on CBS I think it would be better than wasting Stewart's talent just interviewing actors. Colbert would be great at it, if he stayed in character it would be hilarious. He could move over, John Oliver could take his spot once he is done with HBO. But I am not sure, HBO could be his perfect home. But it needs to be more than once per week. Maybe Conan, but I am not sure he would leave TBS. He should be on more of a network, but he is doing great at TBS.

The one thing that I am concerned about is that Chelsea Handler is ending her relationship with E. While I agree with the move because the E channel is speeding along the demise of western civilization one crap filled reality show at a time. CBS could very well try to get the women audience. But I am not sure she is ready for the prime spot and she and her underlings can be annoying often.

I almost would go with Hardwick. Go for the younger audience. Or give him a temporary contract to see what he can do with the show. But I think it would detract from the rest of the stuff he is doing.
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John Oliver actually rejected an offer by CBS to take over The Late Late Show. He chose the HBO deal over CBS. Don't know what that meant, apparently Ferguson's contract is up as well. Were they trying planning to replace Dave with Craig? Or do they just simply want to get rid of Craig?
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Craig does deserve the slot though. But I'm sure too many of the reactionary viewers that enojoyed having Leno talk down to them will be confused by a Scottishman talking to a fake horse and robot sidekick.

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Letterman has sucked since he left NBC. The only decent late night host is Ferguson by far!!! And, no, he would not be as good an hour earlier. So, my answer to who should replace Letterman is... who cares?!?!?!?
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Letterman was great on NBC. The longer he was on CBS, the more he tried to water down the show. I don't know if it was due to his age and he was getting out of touch with what was hip or if he was trying to compete for Leno's audience, which was full of the unhip. Oh look Jaywalking!!!!!!!!! for the 1000th time.
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Hate to say it but so true. Any changes on Late Night Tv for years has meant a change for the worse. His old Late Night NBC days are classic and some early CBS stuff was fine but I only care about some music acts on it or some actor I like nowadays. The sketches on late night type TV have really gone down hill.
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I would think Dave probably wants Craig to replace him but knows CBS doesn't want that. It seems strange to think that Craig won't revolt like Dave/Conan did when they hosted that slot. But I don't think he will. I think he'll keep hosting the Late Late Show.
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Never Craig Ferguson, I don't think they'd let him do the sort of show he likes to do at 11.35. He's pretty much perfect at 12.35.
I feel like Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert may be too happy with their short 4 times a week, politically centred shows. I also don't think that Stewart's interview style is good enough for a full show, or that Colbert's facade would work on a full late night show. And I definitely don't think he'd drop it.
Conan is the best bet, as he still has internet popularity even if his TBS show has flailing ratings. I could even see him taking less money than others to follow in Dave's footsteps again (though that path could also put him off).
I think Chelsea Handler could be the dark horse considering she recently quit E! Although I don't think that CBS would be willing to be make such a bold move.
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Conan does deserve it I feel. Not sure if Kimmel has been mentioned much but we know Kimmel praises Dave and think Dave holds him in pretty good regard. For some later night thing I'd love Sarah Silverman but wouldn't fit this. A woman is due and overdue but think it's awhile.
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I guess Stewart could finally make that long awaited move to a major broadcast network. It's just hard to believe given the fact that he lost or passed on many of the other late night broadcast shows. And he's said many times before that he loves the freedom he has on Comedy Central. Yes, the audience is much smaller there but the buzz/impact seems to be about equal to Letterman/Fallon/Kimmel's.
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LOUIS C.K. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Are people hashtagging years now? What's with that?

I'd be scared if Colbert jumped networks. How could his new show be any where near as good as the Repor[t].
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Yeah, I feel the same with Stewart. They'd have to make their routine more traditional.
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Conan's move would make sense considering he doesn't get much spotlight in the Sahara...ahem TBS. He's also gotten along with him pretty well since he replaced him in 1993. I'm sure Letterman would have no problem with him as his replacement.

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"I'd guess that CBS will shower Stewart with buckets of money until he says yes."

If not, Colbert could shower him with pistachios.
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Steven Colbert (who is CBS' #1 choice atm)
John Stewart
Jerry Seinfeld
Chris Rock
Chris Hardwick (he needs another show)

Pretty much anyone would work, i'd watch anyone. I never liked Dave's style personally so a chance my get me to watch

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I hope the day never comes when Craig Ferguson stops doing The Late Late Show, he is just too good there not having to do the sellout interviews and network-controlled content.
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Just can't get on the Craig Ferguson bandwagon. Tons of fans here but just way too all scattered of a show for me.
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An acquired taste, yet another reason to keep Craig on his show instead of watering down to fit the earlier timeslot.
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