Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Latenight to return

Well, the writers strike doesn't look like its going to be ending anytime soon, but we may be getting a new dose of late night tv regardless.

According to The USA Today Jay Leno and Conan O'Brien are both planning a return to the airwaves as early as January 2nd. They will be joining Carson Daly who is already back on the air, as well as 'probably but not definitely' yet David Letterman, and Craig Ferguson, who are currently in the midst of their own direct negotiations with the writers guild.

The late night slate will obviously be missing the two most important pundits though, Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert who rely on a much more scripted format for their shows.

While I'm interested to see what they do, the big dogs on the air for an hour a night without a net. Can they really just fly off the cuff like that? The word on the street is that back in the strike of '88 when Letterman hit the screen sans writers it was just about the worst thing on television. Now I have faith in Conan O'Brien, but really I have to be practical minded about this.

And what does this mean for the writers? I believe that these hosts have all gone on record in support of their writing teams? Does falling to this pressure to return to work hurt the cause of the writers; or will it just show the networks that without material even the best comedians will fall flat...

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