David Letterman off his Game

Filed under : Chat Show, TV

The Late Night Host fails to Deliver

I caught the David Letterman Show last night where he interviewed English actress Emma Thompson and TV producer and chat show host Andy Cohen and the Late Night host seemed to be really off of his game.

The show started out well enough, with Josh Groban singing a Top Ten of suspect Christmas songs. Letterman feigned surprise at how good Groban‘s voice was. But it was hardly a surprise to anyone else, the man has sold 25 million records and sings opera, pop and everything in between.

David Letterman and Emma Thompson

The problems seemed to start when Emma Thompson came on. Letterman treated her as something of a stranger, despite the fact she has been on the show numerous times before and has always been a fun guest on all of the chat shows that I have seen her on.

Letterman‘s line of questioning has become very predictable, to the point that Martin Short commented on it the last time that he was on “Oh lets talk about the kids or what we did for the holidays…”

So Letterman launched into talking about a round the world trip that Emma Thompson took with her daughter, that they both seemed to enjoy. But he wanted to know about when they wanted to come home and when they had had enough of it. Which Thompson said they never did. The conversation was stilted and disjointed, due to his interjections. He then moved, with no effort at a link, to talking about the film that she was there to promote.

The film, Saving Mr. Banks, features Emma Thompson as P. L. Travers the author of Mary Poppins and covers her part in the making of the musical film with Walt Disney. The film looks like it could be well worth seeing, much more so than this interview.

Graham Norton demonstrates how you should interview Emma Thompson

Things got worse after the break. There was a pathetic joke about “lighting up the Intern” in place of lighting a Christmas tree. Then Andy Cohen was introduced. Letterman seemed to have little interest in him and decided to talk about himself and how he had given up alcohol when he was 35. At that point he cut the interview short and asked Paul Shaffer if he had any questions. Shaffer‘s question about the celebrity bar men on Cohen‘s chat show was even more awkward and dead ended. With that, it was over. I can not see this guy wanting to come back.

You are going to need to raise your game Mr Letterman, there are plenty of younger comedians with better repartee ready to step in.

Craig Ferguson‘s show, which parodies the late night genre, with his robot skeleton side kick, invisible band and pantomime horse, is far more entertaining and I’ve never seen Ferguson crash two interviews on the trot like that.

The show did finish with some good music though. Nick Lowe sang Go Where I Send Thee from his Christmas Album, Quality Street: A Seasonal Selection for the Whole Family. But Letterman annoyed me again by not mentioning one of my favourites Eli “Paperboy” Reed, who played guitar and sang backing with Nick Lowe.

CLICK HERE to download Quality Street – A Seasonal Selection for all the Family by Nick Lowe, or individual tracks It looks like it could be an excellent buy for the festive season.

By Max Power

Check out Emma Thompson’s films and Nick Lowe’s music inthe links below


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