Late Show with David Letterman

Season 1 Episode 1

Show #0001

Aired Weekdays 11:35 PM Aug 30, 1993 on CBS
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Episode Summary

Show #0001
Tom Brokaw shows up to take back some NBC "intellectual property;" Dave shows off the renovated Ed Sullivan Theater; Bill Murray spray-paints Dave's name onto the front of his desk; Billy Joel performs "No Man's Land."

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    Billy Joel

    Billy Joel


    Guest Star

    Tom Brokaw

    Tom Brokaw

    Guest (cameo)

    Recurring Role

    Paul Newman

    Paul Newman

    Guest (cameo)

    Recurring Role

    Bill Murray

    Bill Murray


    Recurring Role

    Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


    • TRIVIA (1)

      • With still a week to go before Conan O'Brien would be ready to take over NBC's Late Night , NBC aired the 1982 LNwDL pilot in the 12:35 EST timeslot, directly after this episode ended. They proceded to air his first ten episodes over the next two weeks.

    • QUOTES (5)

      • David Letterman: (After Tom Brokaw makes a cameo, welcoming Dave and then taking back two cue cards, claiming they were "intellectual property" of NBC) Who would ever have thought you'd ever hear the words 'intellectual' and 'NBC' in the same sentence?

      • (Dave makes his first entrance and is greeted by 2 minutes of a standing ovation and people chanting "Dave! Dave! Dave! Dave!" )
        David Letterman: Please, ladies and gentleman....thank you. But you know, when you really think about it - all I did was take the summer off.

      • David Letterman: I'm very excited about working for CBS. I just found out that in addition to doing the show - next week I get to kill a guy on Murder, She Wrote.

      • Paul Newman: ( After being introduced in the audience by a clip of Ed Sullivan ) Where the hell's the singing cats?
        Dave: No, Paul, this isn't "Cats". Its me, Dave Letterman. This is my new show from the Ed Sullivan Theatre.
        Paul Newman: ( Checking his ticket ) Oops, sorry, wrong theatre. (Gets up and leaves as the audience cheers)

      • Top Ten Things We Like About CBS

        10. You got a problem? The CBS "Family" takes care of it.

        9. The strong, understanding hands of Mr. Charles Kuralt.

        8. Doesn't have foul-smelling disease-carrying bird mascot.

        7. When Angela Lansbury fixes your outboard motor, it stays fixed.

        6. Chance to see Harry Smith naked in CBS sauna.

        5. Have Canadian music director that looks just like our old one.

        4. Candice Bergen curses like a sailor at company retreat.

        3. Three out of every five male employees named "Morley."

        2. Whole nation touched by the heartfelt attempt of Dan Rather and Connie Chung to have a baby.

        1. Executives are much more advanced form of weasel.

    • NOTES (3)

      • With this episode, Paul Shaffer and the World's Most Dangerous Band is rechristened the CBS Orchestra; also, the number of band members is expanded from five to eight.

      • Instead of being introduced by Bill Wendell, clips of Ed Sullivan making various introductions on his show were edited together : "Ladies and Gentlemen
        / one of the greatest novelties / a fabulous boy prodigy / the most amazing of all the chimp acts who have ever come to show biz / he said, as you recall, everybody remembers this one... (Sullivan then pauses and looks down as he forgets the quote) / here's an act that will scare the life out of you / from China / he's been in India, he's been all around the world / just back from Las Vegas / the Italian Casanovia / a Texas friend of mine / my hansome Italian pisano / today's greatest living American / here's the man I invited to Christmas Dinner / David / Letterman!"

      • Bill Murray was also the first guest on the first episode of Late Night with David Letterman. During his appearence on that Late Night episode he asks if Paul knows "that new Newton John thing" and proceeds to 'sing' the then-current song "(Let's Get) Physical". 11 years later as he is introduced by Dave on this Late Show episode, Paul plays the same song in the background.

    • ALLUSIONS (1)

      • The "intellectual property" bit refers to a lawsuit NBC filed against Letterman during the summer of 1993. As a result of said litigation, Calvert DeForest started using his real name, "Viewer Mail" was renamed "CBS Mailbag," and the Top Ten List became the "Late Show Top Ten."

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