CBS Television (The Late Show): David Letterman (Host)
Name a “Top Ten List” that doesn’t sound like a Letterman bit. You can’t, stop trying. And with Monday’s “Small Town News”, and Friday’s “Fun Facts”, David Letterman signed off as the late-night staple after 32 years of trademark irreverence, pet tricks, and the occasionally uncomfortable guest. Letterman was the original anarchist of late-night television. He paved the way to see ridiculous appear on the knife’s edge of unsafe, from throwing a watermelon off a rooftop to putting a camera on a monkey. While typical in a viral video today, Letterman blazed trails for all that arrived at 11:30pm and eventually online. Letterman also changed the interview. He put guests on the spot, pushing the envelope up to painful (or perhaps past it, if you were unfortunate to be one of these guests). While the torch is passed to an exceptional replacement, Stephen Colbert, CBS will miss Letterman’s premier brand, advertising dollars, and witty banter.