Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Vale Johnny

Said my Bruce on this day:

With the passing of Johnny Carson, a whole era of television and entertainment has gone. More than just a comedian and talk show host, he facilitated the careers of countless others who would follow in his footsteps. Among them: Jay Leno, David Letterman, Ray Romano, Joan Rivers, Roseanne Barr, Jerry Seinfeld, Don Rickles and so many others. Unlike his successor, Leno, he turned his show over to guest hosts, among them Leno and Letterman, so that he encouraged and supported his succession in the business of late night talk/comedy. His understated comedy, often just a subtle facial expression, was deeply funny to millions. He was naturally funny; never caustic. He could get more laughs from bad material that he got from good. He made everyone feel comfortable, both guests and viewers. He was made for television and he made television. There hasn't been anyone like him before or since. When he retired he vanished from public view, consistent with his lifelong devotion to his privacy. While the most public of figures he held his private life in strict isolation. No one even knew he was ill. His death has landed like a bombshell.

I am sad he is gone. Like millions of others, I really loved him.

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