Monday, January 24, 2005

Remembering Carson

Johnny Carson was not a genius of a comedian. But he was really good. He managed to become an icon of America, not one demographic or another, through his topical, but not too harsh comedy. There was something in Carson for just about everyone. The show remained pretty good almost until the end, except for the music. It was hard to watch big-band music on late night TV in 1991. And in the last few years it got pretty stale. But even in those later years, it wasn't much worse than Letterman is today. And it was infinitely better than Leno has ever been.

And in a slight paraphrase, my favorite Carson line.

Actress comes on (don't remember who but I think it was in the mid to late 70s) with a cat. She sits down and puts the cat on her lap. She then turns to Carson and asks, "Would you like to pet my pussy?"
Carson: "I'd love to, but you'll have to move that damn cat first."