The Tonight Show with Jay Leno

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NBC (ended 2014)

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The Tonight Show with Jay Leno Fan Reviews (77)

8.0
out of 10
Average
1,717 votes
  • The host with the most, but of what?

    4.5
    2009, like 1993 before it, will go down as a transitional and somewhat tumultuous year in late night television. In late February, Conan O'Brien stepped down as host of Late Night and passed the reins to doe-eyed talk show neophyte Jimmy Fallon, and three months later Jay Leno left the Tonight Show to make way for Conan. This domino effect spills over into prime time, where Leno will launch a new-but-more-or-less-the-same one-hour chatfest in September. This was not something that happened overnight, but rather a heavily orchestrated event strategized by the executives of NBC. Apparently, when you've been the #4 network for five years running, you're not as afraid to throw crap at a wall and see what sticks. Leno's new show is a rare attempt at prime-time block programming, a do-or-die move that The Peacock hopes will turn around their fortunes as well as retain one of the network's longtime cash-cows. Nonetheless, is Jay Leno all that he's cracked up to be?

    With all due apologies to his fans, I must nitpick Leno's apparent status as a living legend. A proven TV star and a team player, yes, though far from a legend. First of all, he wasn't an innovator like David Letterman, nor does he have a distinctive style like Conan O'Brien. Jay borrowed heavily from Steve Allen's ringmaster approach to hosting TTS, with a dashes of Rodney Dangerfield and Johnny Carson thrown in for good measure. Secondly, Leno catered heavily toward middle America and let his pandering chip away at his comedic credibility in the process. I fully understand that Wade the Nebraskan pig farmer could use a good laugh just as much as the average college graduate, yet Leno's paltry turnout at the Emmy Awards speaks levels of his reluctance to get creative. Compared to Letterman, Leno's audience skews toward the 50-plus, the lily-white, and the bourgeoisie. At his worst, Leno is as flavorful as vanilla and as hip as prune juice. There's no question that Jay is a nice guy, nor do I doubt that he has a large circle of friends and well-wishers, but some of his recent accolades are over the top.

    I don't feel that there's any need to elaborate on Leno's so-so (and often patronizing) interviewing skills, so I'll focus on the comedy. "Jaywalking," Leno's self-appointed signature bit, was little more than an excuse for twenty-something California hipsters to deliberately flub simple questions, fully knowing that Jay was interrogating them and they could nab their 15 minutes of fame. "Headlines," arguably his second-most beloved comedy segment, is a thinly-veiled variation on "Small Town News," a bit that David Letterman created on Late Night in the '80s and revived 20+ years later.

    Although both of those bits had their moments, I grind my axe at his nightly monologue. Sure, the opening remarks are a hoary old prerequisite for any talk show host worth their salt, but Leno's might be the most egregiously banal. For 17 years, the Leno Jokebot 3000 has spat out one obvious joke after another, aimed squarely at a select list of targets: Bill Clinton, Monica Lewinsky, Dr. Jack Kervorkian, Michael Jackson, and George W. Bush. Kevin Eubanks, Leno's doting bandleader since the mid-90s, guffaws the loudest and hardest at these inoffensive one-liners, almost as if his paycheck depends upon it. In short, Leno's monologue has always been a curious sight to behold, intermittently entertaining yet drenched in obsequiousness.

    This brings me to my final point: did NBC make a mistake in selecting Leno over Letterman to replace Johnny Carson? The short answer is yes and no. While The Peacock would certainly have a few more Emmys on their shelves, Dave's latent irreverance and my-way-or-the-highway approach would've clashed with potential advertisers (not a total exaggeration). Leno was the safe choice, a guy who could bend over backwards for the network higher-ups and put on a show without being a prima-donna. Letterman may be your TV pal; however, Leno is your goofy uncle, the clean-cut Working Joe, the guy that cracks wise in the church parking lot, the everyman that you can't help but like and admire. Jay Leno is a creation of middle America, and if it works for them, I guess I can't bewail that.
  • Sick of Knocking Obama' S ACA.

    6.0
    Hey Leno give it a rest. You done it so much last week that they dedicated a page on fb about you knocking the president's ACA. Enough is enough. Every new program has its glitches just like GW Bush's Medicare part D did, You are not helping the president, in fact you are ONLY MAKING IT WORSE. GIVE IT A DAM REST.
  • What the hell

    8.5
    Love this and Jay Leno until all that happened with Conan.
  • Late Night King Reins Supreme

    9.5
    I've always been a secret fan of Jay but unfortunately I never get to see his show due to the fact we don't get NBC in New Zealand, which is unfortunate because we should be able to watch it on here.



    He's funny and quite a down-to-earth guy, true he's no Carson but he's pretty damn close if you ask me.
  • The King of Talk Show

    9.3
    Jay Leno is and always will be the man! i mean seriously he knows how to be funny. The thing Jay Leno has that every other talk show host doesn't have is timing. Jay Leno often pauses slightly in between his jokes so that the auidence and the viewers get the full effects. Jay Leno always nails the timing perfectly. Jay Leno also really knows how to play off his guests making them tell funny stories and adding comments to get the full effect. I think Jay Leno is awesome and i love how he makes fun of how old Mccain is.
  • Leno is the only joke on the tonight show

    1.0
    if you have a brain injury or have no sense of humor or just the sense of humor of someone in their 70s then this is the show for you. Retire Leno you've done enough damage
  • We are all going to see John Caparulo

    10
    John Caparulo is playing watseka theatre watseka illinois on st patricks day saturday march 17, 2012. Cap is sooooooo funny. Are you going too...
  • Jay Leno - Vacationer in Chief.

    4.0
    I thought Johnny took a lot of vacations. Jay is the chief. At least Johnny would have a sub. Having old shows as a substitute is ridiculous. Dumb jokes that are dated just do not work.

    As much as I can not take Letterman, it is better than jokes that are no longer relevant.
  • Jay Leno is the comic Everyman. Funny, witty, and playful and never mean. Jay Leno is a class act.

    8.1
    Jay Leno is the Everyman. Remarkable, considering how fantastically wealthy he has become. Despite his wealth and fame, Leno has managed to retain the persona of the wry, smirking Everyman.

    I have to admit, when I was a teenager I preferred Letterman's more biting sarcasm. But as I grew into adulthood I found I preferred Leno's more gentle and good-natured humor. I think Letterman also became a good bit meaner, and at times nasty, over the years, but it's hard to tell.

    For whatever reason, I feel Leno's humor has held up better over the years. He's clever and witty without being mean and dirty. Leno clearly likes people. He likes Americans, with all of our faults and all of our silly insecurities. Leno is always laughing with us and not at us.

    Leno is not a cutting edge comedian. He's not leveling withering sarcasm at America. Rather, he's a comfortable presence and delivers, day-in and day-out, good-natured ribbing of America and our imperfections. There's always a caring twinkle in Leno's eye,and that's why he's been welcome in America's family rooms for so long.
  • Lenno is not funny. The drummer is annoying. Connan is this show's only hope.

    2.5
    Lenno is not funny and he has very poor delivery. He constantly makes jokes that fail and I do not understand how he has come so far. Lenno needs to learn to not laugh at his own jokes even though they are not funny. The drummer in the show is absolutely annoying and constantly chimes in when no one cares. His laugh is also annoying. The only funny part of this show is the monologue which is the writer's work, not Lenno himself. I cannot wait until Connan takes over this show and maybe he can help it out. Until then, I will never watch the boring show.
  • Can't wait to see your show every week night.

    10
    Dear Jay: Just wanted to let you know how great it is to have you doing The Tonight Show. We never even watched one show after you left. Mr. O'Brien is not even funny and never will be. Now,the only thing missing is Kevin Eubanks and The Tonight Show Band. Sorry, but Ricky is not even close to Kevin. He will never have the charisma or the close connection that came across between you and Kevin. I know we are all creatures of habit and nobody likes change, but Ricky just doesn't have "IT" and never will. Hopefully he will not hurt your show and be your downfall. If you ever get a chance and Kevin wants to come back, please jump at the chance. Kevin is 1,000 times better Ricky. Your Monologue, Jay Walking and Headliners are the best. Mr. Leno, we have been trying for more than four years to have our little two bedroom home rebuilt after Hurricane Katrina took everything we owned. My husband Harry is a retired, disable New Orleans Fire Fighter who risked his life every day for 20 years to save others. Now in his time of need, there is no one out there to help. Your show may well be the only thing he has to look forward to because it doesn't look like we will ever have a home of our own again. Thanks for being the only bright spot in our lives.
  • The king of late night.

    8.5
    I caught on to Jay during his time on prime time, and he has been my favorite comedian since. Why everyone is suddenly hating him is beyond me; the situation at NBC was unavoidable with all around bad ratings, and they went with the guy who brings in better ratings, which is Leno. Now, before all you Conan fans start hating on me, I like Conan too, but I prefer Jay.

    Moving on, as with every comedy program, especially daily ones, some episodes are funnier than others. I must say I liked The Jay Leno show more with it's more-comedy-less-guests format (Earn Your Plug was a lot more interesting than interviews), but this is good too. Jaywalking and Headlines are hilarious, and his interviews are sometimes comedy gold. Some of the less frequent comedy segments are my favorites (Cop and Kitty is one of the funniest skits I've ever seen, and JMZ is good too.)

    I watch this show every night, and I see myself becoming a long time viewer.
  • jay leno sucks!

    1.0
    i would rate this show o.o if i could. If you can at all avoid this show, DO! you'll have a better life if you do! watching Jay Leno is like tieing myself to a car and then letting it dragg me down the road causing my face to rubb completly off! watching Jay Leno is like turning on the TV and then this blast of light shoots out of it causing you to go blind and making your nose bleed excessively! watching Jay Leno...well you get the drift! avoid this show at all times if humanly possible! it has brought nothing NOTHING to this world in the form of enjoyment or entertainment! thanks!
  • I can stay up late to wacth the Show

    7.6
    I don't usally like to stay up late at night but when I do its nice to have Jay's show to wacth its informative and entertaining and can be an exciting show to wacth late at night I like the show and the news too and Jay seems like a super nice guy plus the show keeps aa good pace of things to stay up late at night to wacth and it helps making falling asleep again to wacth the show late at night I like how the people in the show come across. I hope my review makes some sense
  • Getting old...

    7.9
    Ok, Jay's funny but he seems to be less so with every passing year. I remember watching the tonight show a few years back and I almost laughed my pants off but not so much the case in recent years. Sure there are always a ton of funny segments like Headlines and Jay Walking but I just can't help but feel that's it's getting repetitive. I don't know about you but it feels like Jay is sliding downhill fast! Maybe it's just me or maybe I'm just growing old of him but how many times can you tell an American fat joke and still make it funny?
  • Jay Leno is hilarious and his delivery is perfect!

    9.4
    This show is incredible. I make sure to DVR it every night so I don't miss it =] The monologues are always mad funny. I think the highlights of this show are the talking photobooth which they do every so often ; and headlines. Plus he has great musical performances by artists who can perform REAL music and not most of the garbage they play on the radio now. The only reason I didn't give it a perfect Ten is because sometimes he has pretty boring guests and I usually skip past the interviews unless it's a celebrity I know [I loved the Miley Cyrus interview..she was sooo hyper!]. I like when Jeff Corwin comes on too [which is pretty often] :D Well yeah - you gotta watch this show every night!
  • The Tonight Show with Jay Leno is a talk-show hosted by Jay Leno.

    10
    I just love this show! I started watching The Tonight in January 2007. When its Monday, I love how Jay picks the most hilarious headlines. He is one of my favorite talk-show hosts. I think I'll be watching The Tonight Show for a long time. In my opinion, Jay chooses awesome guests to come on his show. I think John Melendez, the show announcer does a great job. Also, Kevin Eubanks and the Tonight Show Band are a very fit band for the Tonight Show. I give this show an applause, thumbs up, and a perfect 10. You will always find this show on my favorite shows list.
  • Oh goodie!

    9.3
    At me, the show airs at a quite late hour (I considered it late if I have school the next morning) but every time I sacrifice myself to watch the famous Jay Leno and I don't regret it. My mom keeps arguing with me when I laugh very loud and she can't sleep (she eventualy get used to it),so that's how funny it is! I like Jay Leno, he's a very good host, he can make a joke about anythiiiing,and a funny one too. Besides that,the conversations with the celebrities are warm and witty, and he doesn't have any restrictions whatsoever to make fun of them. So,go go JAY !!
  • This is in my opinion, the best late night show out there. It is tied with Conan O' Brien.

    9.0
    This show is very funny and only Late Night with Conan O' Brien can be called its equal in my opinion. The jokes are usually fresh and original with great timing, although sometimes he uses the same material several times (like the "angry men get ahead" joke). But other than this the jokes are really good. He is definately better than Conan for monolouge (again in my opinion) but I think the segments in Conan O' Brien are consistantly funnier. Hopefully, I won't get bashed by all the Conan fans or Jay haters, but this is just my two cents. Watch both shows and compare them yourself. They're both worth watching on a nightly basis.
  • THAT'S RIGHT, I GAVE LENO THE BIG 10

    10
    Amazing. Superb. Out. Of. This. World.
    I'm a Leno fan, are you? Course you are, everyone is. Unlike other less than perfect shows - can anyone say The Jon Stewart show - Leno actually has a great aray of guests, all the time, nothing boring or snore worthy, at least never for me. It's great that Leno acually airs internationally at relatively the same time as it airs in it's hometown USA. While it not airing elsewhere in record time doesn't affect me because I'm happily watching in Beverly Hills, I appreciate it. I just love Leno, he does a great job, he's funny, he's not overdone - cough Conan - and he paid a visit to Ellen DeGeneres on stage when she was sick; Can you say awwwwwww? Rofl Rofl. But really, Leno's the man!
  • Bada Bababa I'm Loving it!

    10
    He's fat. He's funny. He has a friendly future. He is a phenomenon and a legend to late nighters. I myself a common night owl love his show. I love how he has special guests. They are really fun to see possibly my favorite singer on there my friendly teased. That kind of stuff is funny. It is fun to know about themselves by being playfully critisized. (Or however you spell it) I wish he was on in the day too because sometimes I am too tired to watch his show in the night or I fall asleep in it.
  • Jay leno has guests and does comedy

    9.8
    The Tonight Show is NBC's long-running late-night talk and variety show, currently hosted by Jay Leno in Burbank, California, USA. The hour-long show premiered September 27, 1954 as a 105-minute broadcast originating from New York City and hosted by Steve Allen. The show features at least two guests each night, usually including a comedian or musical guest. Leno has announced that he will step down as host in 2009, and has named current Late Night host Conan O'Brien as his successor.[1]

    Now in its 52nd season (though its roots date back to a local New York program called Broadway Open House in the early 1950s), The Tonight Show is the second longest-running entertainment program in U.S. television history (after the soap opera Guiding Light).

    While NBC executive Pat Weaver is credited as the Tonight Show creator (he created its morning companion, Today), Allen had already created much of the structure of Tonight with his local New York late-night show, which premiered in 1953 on what is now WNBC-TV.

    Each incarnation of The Tonight Show, as outlined below, is generally considered its own entity, with pop culture references frequently referring to the show by its host name more often than as The Tonight Show. The longest-serving host to date was American comedian Johnny Carson who held sway over a 30-year run as the host of The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson during which time the series was often also referred to as The Johnny Carson Show or, simply, Carson. The current host, Jay Leno, has been in place since 1992 and similarly his version of the show is often referred to simply as Leno. The series has also featured many guest hosts over the years, particularly during Carson's reign during his vacations and when he no longer hosted the series five nights a week.

    The Tonight Show became the first American television show to broadcast with MTS stereo sound in 1984. On April 26, 1999, the show started broadcasting in 1080i HDTV, becoming the first American nightly talk show to be shot in HD. The show is shot in 16:9 aspect ratio with a 4:3 center-cut for standard definition TV viewers.

    A kinescope exists of the very first broadcast of The Tonight Show (then called simply, Tonight); Steve Allen welcomed viewers with the warning, "This show is going to last forever", referring to the running time. He has yet to be proven wrong.
  • the show is mainly about comedy, some news, interviews with celebbrities and more.

    10
    the show is hilarious. i first got to know it from my dad as he would watch it every night so i got a chance to watch it once in a while and my favourite joke is the wheel of constipation.but here have been many interviews with actors, comedians and more but one of my favourite parts about some episodes are jay walking and one i forgot the title but who needs to...... altnoughi don't offten watch it i always have a good laugh.
  • The legendary American late night TV show. A host, a live audience, a band, and guests are a proven formula for keeping night owls entertained.

    7.5
    Jay Leno has done a very respectable job of carrying the late night torch with dignity and humor. True he never "reinvented the wheel" but there is only so much you can do with a wheel. Late night talk shows succeed when they stay simple. Give us a solid host, a rocking band, a happy audience, and interesting guests and you have success. Jay leno seems like an incredibly nice guy. Yes, his humor is not edgy but middle America seems to love him as do his guests. It will be interesting to see what he does when Conan takes over because Jay will still be relatively young. The tonight show is one of the last remaining cornerstones of classic television in the modern era and it still entertains!
  • WTF!

    9.1
    This show makes fun of the better people in the world but it also makes fun of bad things which really ticks me off. I mean why? Some of that stuff isn't fair to some people he really likes to make fun of Mo Rocca when he's on that show Mo Rocca is awesome sometimes. I would really like to sue the writers of that show for the mean nasty things they say. But on the other hand it is really funny when Jay talks about certain things and I especially like it when John gets hit by a car.
  • I think that Jay should have Slick 33 on his show!!!!! Slick 33 is one man who makes the crowd!!!!!!!!!!!!! Slick 33 works in a casino in Hayward, Wisconsin. He goes by the name of "Ollie" and he is a Blackjack dealer there at night. WI

    9.1
    Jay Leno needs to see Slick 33!!!!

    Any search engine will show you Slick 33 videos!!! This man is totally out there!!! Ratings for the NBC show will totally pile up with just ONE showing of Slick 33!!!!!!!!!!!!!There are 540,000 or so fans that want to see him at Summerfest 2007!!!!

    Slick 33 has fans coming from Japan and Germany and Canada just to play on his tables and hear his jokes and sing with Slick 33!!!! They don't care how much money they lose, only to get Slick 33 autographs and his album as well!!

    NBC should hurry and grab this opportunity now before some other station sees Slick 33 and grabs him first!!!!

    Slick 33 is on Youtube as well as video.google .com!!!
  • Jay Leno...blah!

    6.0
    First, let me compliment Jay Leno for his great opening monologues. They are witty and current and are better than any other late night talk show hosts' opening monologues, including Conan O'Brien. that said, I can honestly say that Jay Leno has brought "The Tonight Show" down to an almost unsavable level. His interviews are just boring and he never seems to get anything out of the guests. When an A-list guest comes on your show and they have a juicy piece of gossip that is just begging to be discussed, Jay, at best, will skirt the issue. Come on, Jay, you can do better than that.
  • This show is the funniest show on earth I mean it. It was wonderful that Jay had Phyllis Dillar on the show last night.I love the Phoney Photo Booth segments their so out of this world funny it is so hysterical.I miss the Fruitcake lady she was funny.

    10
    Why does Keven wear long sleeves all the time?. It is possible that it is very cold in their?. If their was a contest between Conan vs. Jay, I would pick Jay Leno. I give the tonight show with Jay Leno two thumbs up. And if Jay Leno is reading this : Keep up the good work Jay.
  • Running on empty

    1.1
    Jay has lost his lustre for doing this show, it's very clear. He used to at least fake it but he's not even trying that any more. How much longer do we have to put up with him being mean to his guests and the people in the audience? I hate when he insults people who give up their day to be in his audience, only to be told their clothes look bad. How does he get off saying that? If he didn't have a costumer he'd look like that too. He's just not funny any more. Bring on Conan!
  • Good but not as good as Conan

    7.0
    I like Leno but sometimes the skits arent very funny. I dont like the ones like "[insert name here] goes to [insert name here]". I like Jib Jab, Headlines, 99 Cent items, Ebay and the fake items. The Monolouge is slightly better than Conans [but Conan isnt on as long for it] and joking about the band always being stoned is funny[Much like Conan does to his band]. But he isnt a good interviewer. I like Leno and I will keep watching it and I cant wait till 2009 when Coney takes over.
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