Wednesday, March 04, 2009

First Impressions on the First Fallon

Some thoughts while watching Jimmy Fallon take over Late Night:

- A cold open with Conan. Gee, no one saw that coming.

- Conan used to keep an eye glued to the cue card and it was distracting as heck. Fallon glued two.

- A brisk monologue gets some laughs: "I hate when my dad gets drunk", MicroSoft store people freezing, better economy in Iraq.

- The Roots! Can a house band be any wickeder? How can you go wrong with a band whose members include a full-time percussionist, a drummer with a tall fro, an MC named Tariq and a token white guy. Questions come up though: How long will they last? Can they keep their edge while treading the mainstream? Can white people ever learn to clap to the reggae, or to any beat for that matter? Slow-jam the news - hope to see more of that.

- "Lick it for 10." Nice name for a segment. It uhm, rolls off the tongue. Nothing great. Drew my interest only because the last contestant from Union, New Jersey was most likely Pinoy.

- First Guest: Robert de Niro doing a sort of meta interview. Won't be bothered with questions but would gladly do impressions and tape a skit.

- Second Guest: Justin Timberlake shows us once again how his image gets in the way of his funny.

- The Killer Musical Guest: Van Morrison with a hundred-piece band doing Sweet Thing from Astral Weeks.

- Last impression: for all its claim to newness and innovation, this incarnation of the Late Show stubbornly sticks to some tired Tonight Show staples: guests-for-the-week announcements, the first guest sitting in with the second interview and looking like the most redundant thing in the planet while managing to up the awkward factor ten fold, and all the night's guests in a group hug onstage at the end even if there's a hundred-piece band in the way.

Best to wait for the dust to settle before making any verdict. In the meantime, let's enjoy the circus.

1 comment:

cat with the fiddle said...

looks to me the writers haven't really put their finger on what makes fallon really funny. though i wouldn't say bad for a newbie.

Might be of interest: