The Tonight Show with Jay Leno (TV Series 1992–2014) Poster

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Jay is No Johnny!
ShelbyTMItchell6 September 2013
Warning: Spoilers
Nor never could be. As there is only one Carson. And one Ed McMahon and one Doc Severson. But still, Jay works his own charm and is seen as a really nice and down to earth guy. Sure he is not also Letterman nor funny as Letterman.

But Jay treats the guests at least with decency and kindness. Plus he tries to make them at ease. Unlike Letterman does. But like Johnny, Letterman has his own sense of humor. While Jay has charisma and niceness about him.

But nobody can ever top Johnny Carson nor never will! But Jay is about pretty close!
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He's back but doesn't deserve it
djroomba4 March 2010
Jay Leno does not deserve to come back to the coveted Tonight Show spot. Conan is the guy who earned the spot that he truly wanted ever since he saw Johnny's show as a kid by doing 16 years of truly influential, groundbreaking and critically applauded comedy. The level of quality and quantity of material that Conan turned out every night on Late Night was truly outstanding and in the opinion of this reviewer has not been matched by many other comedy shows and certainly not any other talk show host in history. Conan's gratitude and adulation when he finally received his dream job did not go unheard and he specifically thanked Jay Leno on no more than three significant situations: On his Late Night farewell, as a guest on Jay Leno's last show and on his first Tonight Show.

In extreme contrast, when Jay Leno unashamedly began his return to the 11.30 slot, just like in 1992, Leno had absolutely no words, positive or otherwise, to say about the person who had just left the chair. Instead Jay Leno continued doing the very same easily digestible, hardly strenuous material he had been doing for 18 years. Anyone who had any hope that Leno might evolve to somehow warrant his un-relinquishing need to hang on to the show has been proved wrong by his March 1st premiere.

After a typical monologue(making almost no mention of Jay's premiere) spliced randomly with unfunny new sight-gag 'segments' like "The World's Tightest Pants" Jay did a taped piece involving him looking for a new desk. This was the cue for another unfunny segment where C list celebrities like Randy Jackson and Adam Corolla invaded people's homes while Jay sat at their various desks. That was the limit of the punchline. Jay then revealed his desk as if it was some momentous occasion and interviewed a hyper Jamie Foxx whose attempts to get the crowd to cheer along Leno were humorously futile. Same unfunny business as usual for Jay Leno...
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Normally well worth a watch...
lespike18 January 2004
Obviously being in the UK I might not see this show in the same light as it's seen in the US, but I discovered the show in April-ish 2003 when it started broadcasting on the little known UK channel Ftn (also broadcasts on CNBC Europe, although only a couple of episodes a week)...

Soon grew to love the show's topical humour (we've normally heard of the particular subject in the UK) as we don't really have a show that broadcasts on the same level for the whole year. The guests are also obviously well known to us, so pretty much the whole programme makes sense and is always worth a watch!

Only when it comes to the musical performances do I get a little stuck as not all the bands have much (or if any) UK exposure.

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Leno is cornball
rileyentertainment21 January 2010
Jay Leno and his version of THE TONIGHT SHOW are simply not funny. His style of humour is cornball. His lame jokes do not elicit laughs from the audience but groans. His voice is irritating. His regular features like JAYWALKING are stupid and not original. Wearing a denim shirt with jeans looks ridiculous. What he has just done to Conan O'Brien is unforgivable. My bet is that many people in Leno's committed audience (retirement home patrons) have either forgotten him or died and won't be back. I say his ratings will be flat and within one year he will be yanked from NBC for good. Bets?? Many people in the entertainment business will boycott his show. He will never woo the younger audience NBC very much needs. Hot bands will refuse come in his show. Jay, please go away.
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Above all He's ANIMATED!
BatStarIndyFreak17 November 2002
For all who say that Dave is better, I have to say he's a STIFF! Every time I've looked at Dave while Jay has been doing reruns all I see is that he stands there like his feet are glued to the stage, and gives a monologue that doesn't even last as long as Jay's do. I find Jay to be much more animated, using spunk to give us some added flavor to the jokes. Dave smiles, Jay smirks. Dave's BORING! I think I've seen 3 top ten's I've enjoyed out of about fifteen total I've seen. I find Jay to be a very professional interviewer, having a blast with each guest. Headlines rock! Jaywalking rocks! Sidewalking rocks! I find GREAT chemistry between Jay and Kev. It will ALWAYS be Jay, NOT Dave.
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Best of late night
bigben55 May 2003
If it's one thing Jay Leno does better than any of the late night comics I've seen it's that he is the best at recovering from a bad joke. His everyman's style is very appealing, relatable and funny. I also love the shows variety, its not uncommon for him to pull the rug out from under feet and make things funny out of weird and unusual situations. I love Jay's correspondence and both Jay and Kevin are good for bouncing off each other. Oh yes, and I also love the Headlines.
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Movie-Guru18 June 2002
People underrate this show too much. I think its hilarious. Jay Leno may not write his jokes but hes damn good at telling them. His comedy is real subtle and in-your-face. Conan 'O Brian is just as funny, but his comedy is much different from Lenos, his is more childish (which is funny just the same) while Leno's is more sophisticated. Please people, don't underrate this show.
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How do you not like Jay Leno
messages-lc17 August 2014
Warning: Spoilers
I'll always be sad I skipped out on my tickets during one of Jay Leno's last shows in LA in 2013. Jay headlined this show for over 20 years, and I grew up watching Jay crack good-natured jokes at every celebrity's and politician's expense. I miss seeing him every night, in a definite case of "you don't know how much you need it until it's gone."

Jay's monologue was always the best part of the show, and the intermediate bit between the monologue and the guests was usually pretty great. "Headlines" was always a favorite of mine, as was Beyondo. Though the Jay-walking segments weren't my favorite, they managed to inspire me to become a better person and citizen. I usually skipped the necessary corporate/studio promotional material - aka guest interviews - because they didn't have enough of Jay. Still, Jay had great chemistry with everyone, and I never had to worry about an awkward interview.

The show hit its peak with Ed Hall's self-deprecating humor and Kevin Eubanks heading the band while cracking up at Jay's unfiltered banter. They always had a touch of old-fashioned class mixed in with their dirty jokes and ridiculousness, and that's something Conan's more yuppie d*****baggery (I still like Conan) and Jimmy Fallon's new-age clearly- forced silliness (an astute viewer can tell Jimmy hates his job) can't quite pull off. One thing I absolutely hated: Ross. He's gone on to work with perennial nasty, wrinkled old bag Chelsea Handler, so I can see why I was never a fan.

Jay was the consummate professional, loyal to his staff, and a really great guy. He made fun of everybody on an equal basis, and tried to stay away from the mean-spiritedness that can ruin an entire night for a viewer or the lampooned public figure. The Tonight Show with Jay Leno was great, and I miss the joy Jay brought to his work and into American homes.
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Jay Leno makes this show what it is
Atreyu_II3 October 2007
"The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" is a great television program/show (whatever you wanna call it). It is one of those American shows good to watch especially at night.

This is a type of program which isn't intended to be a great production, ambitious, brilliant or artistic. It is made for pure fun and entertainment, ingredients which are very well combined. And all of this with Jay Leno's humor, which is funny and not dirty. Jay Leno is such a talented, cool and funny guy. He's perfect for this night show and he makes it a pleasant television experience. In fact, I think that this wouldn't be the same without him.

I wonder if there's any celebrity that hasn't gone to Jay Leno's show yet. It is above all things a program where famous people go and talk to Jay Leno, with full audiences watching the show. In fact, the number of celebrities that already went to this show is countless.

Conan O'Brien's show is an alternative to this one. Basically it is exactly the same thing (sceneries are equal and everything else). However, I personally prefer Jay Leno, so I recommend his show more than the show of Conan O'Brien.
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Nowhere near as good as Letterman or O'brien
$TEVE McD23 July 2000
Of the 3 late night talk shows,Leno's is definitely the worst.The problem is,he rarely comes up with any jokes himself,unlike Letterman and O'brien,who have the rare gift of being able to think of things to add to their material on the spot eg-the monologues and it actually be funnier than their given lines.Leno,however simply does not have this ability,and it is the writers you admire and not the host,which shouldn't be the case,as the most important thing is to love the host.

Another thing the show suffers from is that it feels more like a comedy show than a talk show.There are far too many unfunny comedy sketches and obviously set up occurences for it to have the unpredictable feel of Letterman,which thrives on its spontinaity.It tries much too hard for laughs.A very annoying and unnecesarry part of the show is the black band member(I can't remember his name)that is really only there to let out huge and put on sounding laughs at everything Jay says and to be the butt of a lot of Jay's jokes.

I don't hate the show,I mean if there's nothing else on,I'll watch it but it comes nowhere near its two competing talk shows.
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LILES2218 March 2004
This show is still horrible. Easily is the lamest and unfunny talk show ever to be on the air. Jay Leno is one of the worst stand up comedians I've ever seen. He has no comic timing, he is not well spoken, he doesn't write good material and he repeats punchlines. The one liners that he makes during interviews with guests never make any sense whatsoever and are never funny. Kevin Eubanks is completely annoying and lame and him and Jay have ZERO chemistry. They are both total idiots. The bits they do on the show are also completely idiotic and never funny. I've never laughed at Leno's monologue. Its like watching someone drown every night. Dude, if you can't come up with even 30 seconds of good material, why are you trying to do 10-15 minutes every night?? TIP: Quality, NOT quantity!!! It's an absolute crime that Jay is getting paid millions of dollars, meanwhile there are so many struggling comics that are a hundred times better than Jay could ever hope to be. He's unfunny, he's boring and he's a corporate bend-over. He's a disgrace to comics everywhere. The only reason NBC didn't hire Letterman (not that I'm a huge Letterman fan) is because they knew Dave wouldn't be a puppet and let himself be ruled by a bunch of corporate suits. I predict that the Jimmy Kimmel show will kick Jay's but in the ratings and he'll be off the air soon.
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Always Striving for Perfection!
Syl12 May 2007
Jay Leno may not have had the natural presence of Johnny Carson but he does have something else that matters. Leno is completely devoted to his show so much that he has declined hosting the Oscars. He is often the first person to come in the mornings and the last to leave at night. Leno doesn't take vacations because he prefers to work doing his stand-up. I often joke that he's the Judi Dench of stand-up comics because he could have comfortable life with just the Tonight Show salary but he still works about 150 shows a year on the club circuit. The show is always a thrill to watch for his humorous monologues and occasional sketches he does. No, he's not Johnny Carson who barely handled three shows a week and often used replacement hosts like Jay Leno and Joan Rivers. Thank God, Leno doesn't do that. He gets us caught up on episodes we may have missed and he's not gone too long. Leno strives for perfection with humor and it's never-ending!
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The best late night TV show by far.
Brian-2728 June 2001
NBC had no need to worry they knew all along they had picked the right man to fill the shoes of Johnny Carson. Since 1992 Jay Leno has been the king of late night, Jay tells the best and funniest jokes you could imagine. Jay always has that feel good attitude and can brighten a day up for anyone who is depressed, plus Jay is a very caring person you can tell that the way he treats all of his very famous guest. "The, Tonight Show" band is the best the most interesting things about Jay are the many segments of the show he does. "Headlines", and the jaywalk are two of his most popular and funny segments. Believe me just watch this show one time and become a regular viewer Jay Leno is that great of a host.
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Definitely not my favorite...
maXSepult28 June 2003
I must say out of all late night shows, he's my least favorite. I guess what I hate the most, and I know many will agree, is when he tells a joke in the monologue and goes on for about 5 minutes about the same damn subject. Also I find his humour to sometimes be too patriotic. Although he does often have excellent guests, it doesn't make it a much better show...
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Keep Up The Good Work Jay Leno!
famousgir122 December 2001
The Tonight Show With Jay Leno is great. I have a couple of favourite US Late Night shows and Jay Leno is definitely one of my favourites and as I watch his show more and more, I begin to like to him more. His jokes are great and he's just one funny talk show host. I don't like that Kevin Eubanks though.
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Good Show
marvel8815 May 2005
The Tonight Show began in 1954, being hosted by Steve Allen, then in 1957 got Jack Paar, and Johnny Carson came in 1962. Jay Leno first appeared on this show in 1977, and became one of the many to become famous because of it. In the 80s, Jay began to appear more regularly, and became guest host in 1987. In 1992, Johnny Carson decided to retire. There was a bitter battle between Jay Leno and David Letterman on who would get the show, and Leno won.

"The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" aired on May 25,1992. It runs today. It features a great segment, Headlines, in which Jay reads actual headlines from newspapers that have a funny mistake in them. It also has Jaywalking, in which Jay travels in LA and asks questions and finds ridiculous answers from pedestrians. Jay also tells about a 10 minute monologue, that varies from night to night.

Jay is a pretty funny guy, and narrowly beats out Letterman. Some things on the show can be a bit cheesy, but it's good. But Conan is still the best.

8 of 10.
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The greatest late night show ever.
Braveheart162613 October 2001
I don't understand what's so bad about this show. I think it's the greatest late night show ever. And still is. They've got great actors and singers, the jokes are funny and about life in reality and Jay Leno delivers great performances. He only messed up once, when I guess he was tired. Otherwise, the greatest late night show ever. Airs on Monday-Friday at 11:30.
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Just as good now as it was with Johnny!
DocAndMarty20 July 2000
The tonight show has been as good as it ever was. Anyone can easily see that. The show has however gone through many changes, but that's because it's not Johnny's show's Jay's. The Tonight Show is the best ever....and it can only get better!
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Always worth watching
Jerry Ables19 March 2002
I always look forward to watching this show every week night because I think that Jay Leno is a very good host and has a very good talent for telling jokes. My favorite segments on this show include Headlines and Truth In Labeling because they are always very funny to watch. This is one show well worth staying up late for.
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mattkratz11 March 2002
Jay Leno is funny. I prefer him over Letterman. I think his jokes and routines are funny and fresh. I especially love his headlines. Those make my Monday nights. All in all, I think NBC made a wise choice with Leno as the Tonight Show host.
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This show is horrible.
fragile_day5 October 2005
Jay Leno is seriously not funny. His jokes (which most of the time aren't even his) are dull and even when they could be funny, the way he says them ruins the jokes. He should learn a thing or two from Conan, now he is hilarious and he has the ability to make up jokes on the spot that are actually funny, yet Leno can't. Yes, Leno does have good guests some of the time, but he has no clue how to interview them. He just sits there most of the time while they talk, instead of interacting with the guest. Some of the things Leno says to the guests sound perverted and creepy. It also looks like he's sometimes making the guest feel uncomfortable.
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What's with this guy?
llihilloh28 June 2001
How 'The Tonight Show with Jay Leno' is still on the air is beyond me. Not only is Leno always hung up on news or topics that seem to be so boring that the audience doesn't even laugh at, he also doesn't 'connect' with his guests. He sits there in his chair through the however many minutes he (supposedly) interviews the stars and lets them do all the talking. Sometimes I feel bad for the guests because they keep carrying on a conversation with themselves while Leno just stares at them. It should be the other way around.

His jokes are dull and it's easy to tell that he doesn't come up with the majority of them. Thanks to his writers, the show has the tiniest bit of flare needed for the tiniest bit of laughter.

The comedy sketches that he puts on make no sense and even he doesn't understand them once in a while. I wish that this show would be cancelled and finally a funny man can step up to the plate. Yup, Conan O'Brien's the one.

1. O'Brien - - 2. Letterman - - 3. Leno

And what's the matter with Kevin Eubanks? He always sits there with his guitar acting like he doesn't speak English. Lighten up, Kev.
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Simply the Best
maherri1 August 2001
"The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" is the funniest program on television. You simply can't beat him, he is the primary reason NBC is "Americas Late Night Leader" :-) I don't like the "new" set as much as the older one, but I think I can get used to it. If you haven't watched it, I suggest you do, it is an hour full of laughs.
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The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: The Best Late-Night Show ever!
shippie8514 June 2000
"The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" is the best late-night show ever. I have been watching it ever since it began, when I was seven-years-old. Seven years later, he continues to provide the world with wonderful monologues, specials, and guests. Mondays would not be complete without Headlines, and who could forget those stupid Jaywalking folks?

For a funny, and honest nice guy, Leno is your man.
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