Ever since I acquired my Ipad a few years ago, I have become a bit of a YouTube addict. However, my addiction is fairly focused – I tend not to get sucked into a vortex of random searching, instead I have specific go to places for my YouTube amusement. No – it isn’t cats that look like Hitler. It is American chat shows. I can’t get enough of them. If they screened here, my DVR would be backed up with episodes – though I actually find YouTube as good a way to watch them as any, as I can ignore the boring bits (monologues etc) and skip straight to the good stuff – celebrity interviews and random challenges/games. I know – it isn’t high brow entertainment, but it floats my boat when I am after mindless entertainment (which appears to be daily). Below I have listed my top 5 US chat shows, and what their best bits are – just in case you need a new YouTube addiction yourselves 😉
1. Jimmy Kimmel: I think Jimmy is probably the best interviewer of the lot – in terms of getting the best out of his guests and inserting witty retorts at every chance (but not in a stealing the limelight kind of way). He gets the crème of the crop of Hollywood and you can see why. He is also friends with many of Hollywoods A-list, but he takes advantage of these friendships in a relaxed, easy way, rather than a ‘I am milking it’ kind of way. Things to watch out for: his regular ‘celebrities read mean tweets’ segment – which pretty much does what it says on the tin, to hilarious effect. Best ever Jimmy Kimmel segment: has to be his running gag about his distain for his friend Matt Damon – culminating in the most excellent ‘I’m F***ing Matt Damon‘ and the rebuttal, ‘I’m F***ing Ben Affleck‘. Comic genius.
2. Jimmy Fallon: two Jimmys in late night TV? That’s right – and it is tricky to call which one is funnier. Fallon has street cred as a former SNL cast member, and has some serious chops when it comes to singing, dancing and game playing with his guests. He recently took over from Jay Leno has the host of The Tonight Show – and is doing a fantastic job. Things to watch out for: he has some pretty random games, including Pictionary, Box of Lies and Lip Sync Challenge – all of which, depending on the calibre of the guests, can be hilarious. Best ever Jimmy Fallon segment: I thought the Joseph Gordon-Levitt/Stephen Merchant lip sync battle was going to be hard to beat – then Emma Stone came on and stone cold killed it at lip syncing. Hilarity to the extreme.
3. Conan O’Brien: this peculiar looking guy can be a little hit and miss, and I have yet to work out why he needs a side kick, but when he is on form he is well and truly drop dead funny. Things to watch out for: to be honest it is his interviews that stand out – it may just be good scripting, but he seems make the celebrity interview into a bit of an art form, and often elicits the most random stories you will ever hear. Best ever Conan O’Brien segment: I may be a little biased here, but when Ryan Gosling recruited an audience member to do his interview for him, I not only couldn’t stop laughing, but was also really really jealous of that lucky girl.
4. Ellen: she may not be late night, but Ellen is killing it in the daytime chat show stakes – and watching her show you can see why. She is relaxed, funny, friends with everyone – and also has nice messages about sharing the love and doing good which her demographic must love. Things to watch out for: she has a habit of trying to scare her guests, which can be done to hilarious effect – such as here with Hailee Steinfeld. Best ever Ellen moment: This is a very hard call as there have been many, but for me it has to be her performance of ‘What Does the Fox Say’ with Ylvis last year. Genius.
5. Seth Meyers: Seth is the new kid on the late night block, having moved from being head writer and performer on SNL. He still has his training wheels on, and I would suggest he has some work to do to really earn his late night credentials – but his dimples will ensure I will keep watching while he settles in. Things to watch out for: I am not in love with any of his sketches yet, so it would have to be his interviews that are my go to at this stage. Best ever Seth Meyers moment: he has only been on air since February so there isn’t a big body of work to choose from, but this typically forthright and funny interview with the wonderful Jennifer Lawrence that is my highlight so far.
Well, if that doesn’t give you some ways to while away your weekend, I don’t know what will. Happy watching!