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Describe you special moments watching Johnny Carson.

I always watched it with my dad. My parents were divorced I was about 13 years old and staying up late with my dad is good memories.

by Dad hated Letterman reply 21Last Sunday at 5:01 PM

It was always a treat to stay up late when Joan Rivers was going to be a guest. Those two together were magic.

by Dad hated Letterman reply 104/13/2019

I went to the show in 1979 but there was a guest host. Still a cool experience.

by Dad hated Letterman reply 204/13/2019

I think it was golfer Arnold Palmer's wife who was the guest, Johnny asked her if there was anything special to did to help Arnold's game. She said, "I kiss his balls for luck" Johnny says, "I bet that makes his putter stand up" the screen went black and when they came back neither Palmer's wife nor Johnny was there.

by Dad hated Letterman reply 304/13/2019

R3 oh my goodness that is so funny!

by Dad hated Letterman reply 404/13/2019

In the summer of 1989, I worked a restaurant job and was too wired to go right to sleep. I watched every single episode that summer, and learned to love Johnny and hate Jay Leno (he was on an awful lot). Never realized how dated it was even then, but have trouble getting past that when watching on youtube. That said, nothing has really replaced it for me.

by Dad hated Letterman reply 504/13/2019

[quote]when they came back neither Palmer's wife nor Johnny was there.

R3. Where did they go...who was there in their place...and did they return anytime in the course of the show?

by Dad hated Letterman reply 604/13/2019

[quote]I think it was golfer Arnold Palmer's wife who was the guest, Johnny asked her if there was anything special to did to help Arnold's game. She said, "I kiss his balls for luck" Johnny says, "I bet that makes his putter stand up" the screen went black and when they came back neither Palmer's wife nor Johnny was there.

Sorry, didn't happen.

by Dad hated Letterman reply 704/13/2019

Neither did this one, I'm pretty sure.

Enter guest and DL fave Zsa Zsa Gabor, carrying her pet cat. She seats herself, and places the kitty in her lap.

Minutes later:

Z.Z. to Johnny: "Would you like to pet my pussy?"

Carson: "I will if you'll move that infernal cat."

by Dad hated Letterman reply 804/13/2019

I saw Ren Woods perform an amazing 'Dancing Queen/Cabaret medley.

by Dad hated Letterman reply 904/13/2019

When I was 12, they had a special program at the school where you could sign up and work with the janitors giving the school a mega cleaning over the summer.

It was hard work. And unpleasant. There was no air conditioning in the school and it was humid as fuck. I made $3.35 per hour.

At the end of the summer I was very excited. I hadn't spent a dime of what I made- my dad put it all into a savings account for me. I was told I could buy one thing, and the rest of my money would sit in the account until I needed a car a few years later.

This was at a time when most people didn't have VCRs. I was SO EXCITED to get one! The first movie I rented was Mel Brooks Hitchcock parody High Anxiety.

Anyway, I decided to tape Carson every night. One night, early on, it accidently kept taping into Letterman (his first year, 1982.) I watched it and I was hooked. Eventually I was taping only Letterman. But I always respected Carson. I knew his place in TV history.

A couple years later, my friend John from high school moved to Marina del Rey. (We lived on Long Island.) My first ever trip to LA was to visit him. I decided I wanted to see Johnny. We went to NBC in Burbank at 5am in the morning. About two hours later, we had our tickets.

We returned to Burbank at 4pm. Now, since this day in 1985 I've seen and worked with many famous people. But I think the most impressive and exciting moment involving a celebrity was that day. Hearing Ed McMahon say "Heeeeeeere's Johnny!" and having him appear from behind that multi-colored pastel curtain was by far the most electric moment ever. Seeing Johnny Carson in front of you- he was charm, chrisma, and fame personified.

His guests that night we're no great shakes. Gary Busey was promoting some movie about Marilyn Monroe and Einstein. And there was (I kid you not) I guy who went over Niagra Falls in a barrel.

The third guest was a young, unkonown comic making her very first network appearance. Her name was Roseanne Barr. She actually KILLED that night. Ed McMahon was laughing particularly hard. During the commercial, Carson walked over to her and said "that was very funny. You're gonna be a star."

Pretty cool thing for 15 year old me to witness on my first LA trip.

by Dad hated Letterman reply 1004/13/2019

^^^ "My husband said to me, 'Ohhh, Roseanne, do we have any Cheetos left?' Like he can't go lift that sofa cushion himself!"

by Dad hated Letterman reply 1104/13/2019

I never saw his show as it was not broadcast in my country but I always thought he was a great host at the Oscars.

by Dad hated Letterman reply 1204/13/2019

I remember touring the set in 1990 and was surprised that the cyclorama-style photograph of the nighttime cityscape behind the desk and guest chairs - was entirely hand painted with thick globs of brilliantly pigmented acrylic paint.

Looked sort of like a Seurat up close.

And the paint surface wasn't canvas or wood, but some sort of low-pile, Berber-like carpeting, mounted to the flats.

by Dad hated Letterman reply 1304/13/2019

I watched by myself, but only on Fridays when I didn't have a bedtime. Even though he had some bad jokes, it was comforting to watch. I liked it better when Joan guest hosted.

by Dad hated Letterman reply 14Last Sunday at 2:00 PM

Oh yeah, forgot to add that I never "got" all the talk about Carson's dark side (don't know why I overlooked the Joan Rivers episode) until I read Johnny Carson by Henry Bushkin. The author was his lawyer, and right away Carson got him involved in some questionable things -- like breaking into an apartment Joann Carson used for assignations. Carson proceeded to destroy Bushkin's family, only to toss him aside socially and professionally in the eighties. Forget why, maybe something to do with licensing? Anyway, totally cut him off forever.

by Dad hated Letterman reply 15Last Sunday at 2:32 PM

I was much more a Letterman fan. Come on the time he had Lisa Bonet on and was stuffing grapes in her mouth. Priceless.

by Dad hated Letterman reply 16Last Sunday at 3:41 PM

Went to a taping when I was 16 or so. I remember Walter Matthau was one of the guests, but my most vivid memory was after his monologue and during the commercial break, he took questions from the audience. Someone spoke up and noted that he didn’t play with his tie during the monologue as he usually did (it was part of his shtick). He answered, “No, I found something better to play with”. Tee-here. Quite titillating to 16 year old me.

by Dad hated Letterman reply 17Last Sunday at 4:03 PM

Sad.

by Dad hated Letterman reply 18Last Sunday at 4:08 PM

When I was 11, I thought his Mister Rogers parody was the very height of wit.

by Dad hated Letterman reply 19Last Sunday at 4:17 PM

Okay, it's time for the Ed Ames tomahawk throw.

by Dad hated Letterman reply 20Last Sunday at 4:49 PM

What's great, I think, about the Ed Ames thing isn't Johnny's lines. Though they were clever and quick. But Ames' impulse to go grab the axe, and Johnny stopping him. As phallic as it looked sticking out as it was, Johnny knew it would look ten times worse with Ed Ames yankin' at it!

by Dad hated Letterman reply 21Last Sunday at 5:01 PM
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