Tuesday, November 17, 2015
Expat Observations: Late Night Talk Shows
Late night talk shows are an institution in the United States. All the main networks have them, and there are even more on basic cable. These shows provide topical monologues at the start commenting on the day's news, comedy bits, interviews with tv and film stars or other people of note, and musical or stand-up comedy guests. They are an important part of the tv landscape and a way for acts to break out in popularity.
How many late night talk shows are there in Australia? ZERO. The closest I've seen in my time here has been Rove on Ten, and Adam Hills in Gordon Street Tonight on the ABC, but even those shows were on in prime time. If you did want to see a late night talk show on free to air tv your only option is to watch those imported from the States - The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, The Late Show with Stephen Colbert and The Late Late Show with James Corden.
I have never understood why the format isn't on tv here as you think there would be at least one show. It's very unfortunate for Australian acts as they really have no where to go to promote their latest projects, tv shows, films or albums except for morning tv and news/entertainment shows like The Project (and that's if they can get on as those shows are more likely to have international guests who are in town). How can the next great Australian band or comedian be discovered in such a closed media environment? And how can Australia get nightly social commentary on things that are happening in the country without a late night host to hold those in power to account for their actions?