I used be a "TV kid" like most of Japanese who spent a childhood
in '70s. Ultraman, animation, comedy, music and variety ... brand-new contents
were supplied one after another.
In my junior high school, once a home room discussion between parents and
the children were settled by the PTA. "I have a serious problem with
my kid's long time TV watch. Disgusting 3 hours. How about other students
in this class?" Then we were taken
part in a quick research. "OK. So how many hours you guys watch TV a day? Rise your hand" Said our home room teacher. "1 hour, 2 hours ..." Students rose their hands. "7 hours!" A couple of students include me rose the hand. "Oh, you guys please no
kidding. How you can watch the TV for 7 hours a day" We were preached by someone's mother. Yeah, mam. But I was not kidding. I answered the question quite honestly. I had a lot of TV programs must see.
So even after grown up, I was really looking forward to watching TV, especially
in another country. A morning show on Thames TV of London, a quiz show
about mathematical formula in Paris or soap opera of the Havana, the TV
programs are closely linked to
my memories for the place, people I met, and of course my own history.
Among them, the most impressive TV programs to me are the US where I had
lived for two and a half years. In the beginning, when I wasn't good at
English very well, the visual comedies were my favorite. Coz, it's easy
to understand. But gradually my TV
kid spirit took me to the another program hunting. Finally, I got to the talk show, the most popular category for American. "Late Show" "Late Late Show" "The Tonight Show" ... On week nights, from the east coast to the west, talk shows were flourished.
Generally, in the opening statements, talk show mentioned gossips of politician
or celebrities with dry humor. Maybe I was searching some materials for
my own small talk in it.
"Late Show with David Letterman", a giant among dozens of talk
shows come and go, closed the long history after 33 years, 6028 episodes.
In exact, his talk show had been aired from 1982 to 1992 on NBC as "Late
Night with David Letterman" Later,
from political reason, he moved to CBS with whole staff. Fortunately, I knew both Dave which was recorded at NBC studio in Rockefeller Center and the CBS version at the Ed Sullivan Theater in the mid town, NYC.
Of course, I have no chance to see "The Late Show" here in Japan. So it's a little surprise I heard the news the long-running talk show had been ended on May 20, 2015. Missed it? No, I checked it on the internet.
I heard Dave had got heart surgery 15 years ago. Now he looked fine. The
back band, Paul Shaffer and CBS Orchestra, looked no change since twenty
some years ago I watched. Oh, I exaggerate just a little bit. Apparently
years had been passed both on viewer and performers.
The program was on the great routine (LOL) "Top ten list" Choosing a daily topic and counting down with a joke comment was as always. Each time Dave read the comment on the card, threw it away from the stage set window behind him to the painted
skyscrapers. "clash" sound effects. How many window grasses had
been broken with it? Although that night was the special edition. 10 regular
guests commented on each list. The topic was "The things I've wanted
to say to Dave"
Dave was good at making up kids or ordinary people to the TV idol. Even his mam. The first time he called up his mother on the air, his mam's words was "Dave, you have a show?" It's a almost 10 years after he started the talk show (LOL)
Dave himself went out to the town and made a master piece of comedy sketch.
In the final episode, he looked back the sketch in "Taco Bell Drive-through"
Dave pretending Taco Bell DT staff talked to the customer behind the order
mic. "If you Mexican, you would get 50% off" "Can't hear
it well. Please talk in full volume" or "I'm in lunch break.
Buy me something from the menu. I'm hungry" The scenario must be made
up by writer and director. But somehow I was trembled in the made-up situation
instead of laughing (LOL)
Talking about the main part of the program, they have got a variety of guests, from super models, holly wood celebrities to the presidents of United States.
How is the situation of sponsored TV in US? Now the trend is on demand
pay TV down there? But I liked the time watching talk show with local commercial
in the bedroom drinking beer at the very end of a day. I think pay TV is
not an easy TV watching any more.
Oh, you ask how many hours I watch TV a day now? .... 30 minutes.
" Broadcast sign-off " New York, USA 1992