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CBS
Back in the days of Vaudeville, the best acts were the ones that were most versatile. The people who could do "One Man Shows" were always headliners, top billing, favorites of the audience and commanded a lot of attention and a lot of scratch.

And really, that's still at least a little bit true. If you look at who audiences clamor over - People like Neil Patrick Harris, Hugh Jackman, Maya Rudolph (who is bringing the Variety show format back to television, two weeks from tonight on NBC), these aren't just actors or comedians or musicians or dancers or raconteurs. They are performers that can do it all!

And that brings us to:

WAYNE BRADY



@waynebrady for the twitter followers



As I stated, the four people I have selected as my top contenders for Craig Ferguson's eventually vacated job as host of the Late Late Show are already in the CBS stable, and Mr. Brady is no exception. His current employment is as the host of the long time, popular game show "Let's Make a Deal." But he's also a regular on the comedy game show - The CW's "Whose Line Is It Anyway?" which he has been doing since that program was a staple on Comedy Central. (Note that both The CW *and* Comedy Central are part of the Viacom family - first cousins of the CBS Television Network).

Hosting a talk show would be nothing new to Wayne. He had a self-named daytime program that aired from September, 2002 through May, 2004. The program won an Emmy for Best Talk Show in its first season and Wayne himself won the Best Talk Show Host Emmy in 2003 and 2004, both years it aired! Those credentials speak for themselves. What network wouldn't want a multi-Emmy winning talk show host to take charge of a late night broadcast?

But the point is, Wayne Brady is so talented, he could host a show without guests and pull it off! His years of experience in improv mean he is ready for anything. And his vocalizing talents are quite impressive as well. Throw in some impressions, some self-deprecating humor, maybe a taped segment from somewhere in Los Angeles, some ad-libbed segment with some audience members and... hey! The hour is up! Just imagine the extra fun when we mix in some celebs for him to converse with!

Though he does a great job as the ringmaster of "Deal," bamboozling contestants and handing out prizes or Zonks, Wayne's best talents are being squandered on the game show host routine. That's why he should be hosting The Late Late Show. He would be able to do a lot more of what he's great at and that's a lot of different stuff!

Ideally, he should have a house band because he is that dynamic with the singing, though that's the one thing the Late Late Show has never had, from Tom Snyder to Craig Kilborn to Craig Ferguson. So I hope that's something the network is willing to spring for. But if not, don't worry about it, CBS. I'm sure the unflappable Brady will be able to cope.

Now, just as women haven't had much chance to appear in Late Night, Persons of Color have also had limited opportunities during that time period. In fact, if he landed the gig, he would be the first African American to have his own daily network talk show that aired before 1 AM, ever. So, it would be quite a coup for Wayne to take the helm of Late Late. And certainly if you like what he's done on "Let's Make a Deal" these past several years, he can bring the very same approach to the format at 12:37. Still need him to host the daytime show? I'm sure he could work that out, too. Game show schedules often only require a couple of days of work a month.

But Wayne Brady is so great at pretty much whatever he does, I know adding Late Night Talk Show Host to his list of jobs would be a piece of cake.

Comments

( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
ravenfeather
May. 5th, 2014 08:06 pm (UTC)
I agree with this one 1000 percent. One thing you did not mention is his high ethical quality. The man can do anything, but seems to choose to glorify GOOD. I have never seen him in a spot that I did not enjoy thoroughly.

I saw him on a daytime spot where he described how he felt when a teen age boy next to him ogled his 12 year old daughter's bootie, and he was asked if he was going to be one of those crazy dads. He said, that no, he never wants to behave in a manner that convinces his daughter that she cannot talk to him about anything, so when dating commences, he will be the cool calm dad until she walks out the door and THEN he will fall apart and tear the house down with his bare hands. Didn't Oprah start out (or quickly rise to) a network talk show?
penpusher
May. 5th, 2014 08:45 pm (UTC)
Well, yes! Wayne is a very ethical man, which is why the Dave Chappelle/Wayne Brady piece from "Chappelle's Show" is even funnier than it would have otherwise been.

As for Oprah, she never had a late night talk show. And she never had a regular network talk show. Her daytime show was syndicated, and, well, it was on during the day.
ravenfeather
May. 5th, 2014 11:40 pm (UTC)
I saw "Chicago" and Syndicated, but for those of us not television oriented, syndicated has .., no real meaning. I watched her on a network. Contracted or not the reality was that she was on one of the 3 and soon to be 4.

I am happy to see any ... "minority" and I hate to use that term here, but it fits... get a nod. We are too died in the wool old time we can't move on from the family decomposing mulch heap that has always been in this country. Gender and Race are ... non consequential. We should choose that way. We should think that way.
penpusher
May. 6th, 2014 12:19 am (UTC)
Yes I suppose that's true, and most folks don't care if a show is syndicated or on a network, if they like it and are able to watch it.

Apparently Norm MacDonald, formerly of SNL has been trying to build a twitter campaign to get the Late Late Show job. I'm really floored that anyone is buying into that, but that's another reason why I'm posting these essays to twitter. If Norm gets the job I will never watch that show!

But to your point, CBS has a really great opportunity to give a woman or a POC the job, and I really feel the choices I'm listing are all very viable and very good. I really would be happy with any of these 4 contenders.
ravenfeather
May. 6th, 2014 01:26 am (UTC)
I always get Norm McDonald confused with the cow joke guy that was on Carson with the thick dark rimmed glasses. I can never find him. I am not fond of Norm McDonald.
penpusher
May. 6th, 2014 04:11 pm (UTC)
Do you mean the character that Carson played, with the tartan jacket and the cap with the ear flaps? Floyd R. Turbo? Or is this an actual person that was a guest on the show?
ravenfeather
May. 6th, 2014 04:39 pm (UTC)
He was an actual person, a comedian, from the midwest and was kind of a big deal for a short period of time. Deadpan delivery, lots of cow jokes and brilliant use (IMO) of oxymoron. I try to find him on the internets every few years, but don't have the right search information to get that person to pop up.
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )