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Kaoteek

The Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson

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I think it's more than time that CraigyFerg had his own thread around here. So let's discuss our favorite Scotsman, his weird shrugging horse, his racist producer, and his infamous robot skeleton sidekick.

... and I'll start by saying that, despite the current (and really annoying) three new shows/two reruns weekly schedule (thanks, basketball) how much I enjoyed the Scarlett Johannson interview. It's always great when bigger names drop by and are totally game for whatever Craig throws their way.

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I know they're gone and fairly unlikely to return.  I also get why Craig doesn't want them back--he thinks they're played out (the same reason he's really not doing musical cold opens anymore either).  But personally I miss Wavy, Sid and the others.

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Craig makes almost every guest great, but some are his personal clear faves, and some (not always the same people, but often) seem to especially be fan faves.

Discuss those folks here!

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My personal favorites are guests that Craig has known since his days in the Old Country -- such as Stephen Fry, Hugh Laurie, Emma Thompson (who hasn't been on in far too long). Or fellow Euro-peeps, like Gerry Butler, Michael Sheen, Ewan McGregor.  Or authors like Lawrence Block, Philip Kerr, Sloane Crosley. 

Or -- best yet -- combine all three of those with recent guest Denise Mina. Now that was a GREAT interview. 

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I marked this one as "spoilers," just in case. 

Craig's character of "Simon" will be making a return to Hot in Cleveland next Wednesday, April 9 at 10/9c on TV Land. This is the first of at least two episodes he will be in this season. 

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I hope we're allowed to have threads of both TLLS-related stuff and just Craig-related stuff. They seem to go hand-in-hand. :)

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One thing which seems pretty well established is that Craig is far more.. into... interviews with beautiful women.  Wow, is that any surprise?  While on some level it could come off as a bit creepy, he's a bit over the top with his reactions to the ladies, so IMO it's actually amusing viewing.  His best ones are actually when he gets that magic combo of a really beautiful woman, but one who's a bit of an oddball, and those segments just.. work.

Edited by Kromm
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Also marking as spoilers, in case people want to talk about the shows they've been to. :)

As you may know, Craig recently wrapped up about 10 days of standup throughout eastern Canada, with a quick pop into the US (Portland ME, and Concord NH). He currently has three gigs on the schedule for this May, all in the NYC area:

Friday MAY 9, 2014 - PORT CHESTER, NY at The Capitol Theatre
Saturday, MAY 10, 2014 - ATLANTIC CITY, NJ at Trump Taj Mahal
Sunday, MAY 11, 2014 (Mother's Day) - WESTBURY, NY at NYCB Theatre at Westbury

Tickets are currently on sale for all three.

 

 

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Beautiful and oddball are right up his alley. Throw in smart, to boot, and he's a goner. LOL! 

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Craig messing around with or tossing a log at the picture-of-a-fireplace will never not crack me up. 

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I enjoy when they're on, but I don't particularly miss them.

When he was still using them regularly, I did miss the variety that he used to use -- bunny, crockadiligator, pig, chicken, monkey, giraffe, tennis-ball-on-a-stick, shark, etc. You never knew who would show up! Toward the end, all anyone ever whined for was Sid and Wavey. (Which are both hilarious, but some variety is nice, too!) That could be part of why he got a bit tired of them himself. *shrug* 

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I do love the Not-A-Real-Horse. The two halves - Joseph and Ryan - really work well together, and manage to be hilarious without making a sound. They have really turned that horse into a great character. I especially enjoy seeing the Horse-Craig relationship. (And I love that having a pantomime horse is a completely Scottish thing to do.) 

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I appreciate Geoff the most when he's silent. Heh. 

[Geoff mode on]HOW.  DARE.  YOU.[/Geoff mode off]

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Okay, Letterman just announced he's retiring in 2015. So, in your opinion, would Craig go for his job, or would he rather stay in his current timeslot, and keep on doing his schtick as usual ?

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Okay, Letterman just announced he's retiring in 2015. So, in your opinion, would Craig go for his job, or would he rather stay in his current timeslot, and keep on doing his schtick as usual ?

In Bill Cater's book, The War for Late Night, he mentioned Craig's contract (at the time it was written) included a clause that he would assume hosting duties if anything happened to Dave. That makes me think he would be somewhat interested. I certainly don't see Craig doing the LLS indefinitely but the confines of 11 pm may be too much for Crain's free-wheeling sensibilities.

If Craig did end up hosting The Late Show, maybe there would be an incentive to move it to LA since The Tonight Show is now based in NYC.

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Okay, Letterman just announced he's retiring in 2015. So, in your opinion, would Craig go for his job, or would he rather stay in his current timeslot, and keep on doing his schtick as usual ?

He's said repeatedly over the years that he's not really interested in the Dave slot, but if they offer him enough money, or to move it to LA, so he doesn't have to uproot his family? I don't know....

I sincerely hope, if he's offered the position, that he flatly turns it down. I have confidence that Craig would do a good job, but I don't think the kind of people who enjoy the "standard" late night shows that are in that earlier slot would be able to handle Craig's bizarre off-the-wall sense of humor, dancing fake-horse, and talking skeleton robot. They just want a couple of harmless not-too-thinky laughs as they drift off to sleep. And, if he does take it, and they force him to become more "mainstream," I think it would just crush his spirit into tiny bitter pieces. He might end up much more wealthy, but I think he'd be trading the cash for happiness. 

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Craig messing around with or tossing a log at the picture-of-a-fireplace will never not crack me up. 

He himself may get tired of it eventually (probably far before we do).

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He's said repeatedly over the years that he's not really interested in the Dave slot, but if they offer him enough money, or to move it to LA, so he doesn't have to uproot his family? I don't know....

The network may be up to allowing the 11:30 show to be out of LA, because due to Fallon and Myers BOTH being in NY now, there may be a bit more of a perceived vacuum in LA.

They could also counterbalance Craig sticking in LA if they wanted to by planning his 12:30 successor in NY.

I often wonder if something totally new could work for a 12:30 show.  Chicago is not the magic third solution anyone might hope--plenty of stars go there but not on any predictable rotation since Oprah retired.  What I've been thinking about is Miami (or maybe Orlando).  It's the kind of destination you could GET stars to go to even if it wasn't originally in their plans.

Back to Craig.  Yeah, if history is any lesson 11:30 could simply be a career ending trap.  It might just be better to allow CBS to shoot for someone like Stewart or Colbert (if their own contracts allowed a move) and stay comfortable and relatively safe where he is.

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Does anyone know why he started doing the whole "Not Like Any Other Late Night Show" thing a while back? It's not done as often as it once was (perhaps because he taped a whole batch of shows ages ago that are airing now), and it's not my personal fave, but it really stuck out when I first saw it.

It seems like a strange bit to me, I guess because it's really obvious compared to Craig's usual sly humour. I don't really get the point he's trying to make with it, so I assume I missed something that explains it.

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Oh, there's also one of his longest running bits.  I wonder if "What did we learn on the show tonight, Craig?" will ever go away.

Although it might count as a totally new bit if the kitten is ditched and a new method of delivering/introducing this is started.

 

 

Actually the end of that montage does highlight something.  Even if the kitten is consistent, there have been themes to what follows that Craig has run with repeatedly, then abandoned, like "GP & The Ferg".

Edited by Kromm
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Speaking of things long ago abandoned, I miss the Spanish version of the "What Did We Learn..." song. I still sing "Que apprendimos en el programa, senor Craig?" every now and then. It makes me strangely wistful.

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Does anyone know why he started doing the whole "Not Like Any Other Late Night Show" thing a while back? It's not done as often as it once was (perhaps because he taped a whole batch of shows ages ago that are airing now), and it's not my personal fave, but it really stuck out when I first saw it.

It seems like a strange bit to me, I guess because it's really obvious compared to Craig's usual sly humour. I don't really get the point he's trying to make with it, so I assume I missed something that explains it.

I don't know if there's a specific reason behind the joke. I think it's simply a take that people tend to (rightfully) object that all Late night looks kind of the same.  White guys.  Except (as Craig jokes) Chelsea Handler and Arsenio, who, face it, are barely there.  And also in part this could be about vague talk about how Craig can be a bit innovative and strange, what with the Robot and horse and stuff, but posed as a kind of self-mockery of the idea.

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Does anyone know why he started doing the whole "Not Like Any Other Late Night Show" thing a while back?

He started doing it on Feb 18 2014... between when Fallon moved to Tonight and Seth started Late Night. ;)

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I guess we can consider his Price Charles an ongoing bit, although he's put it in different contexts at different times.  

The most persistent is the Prince Charles version of a Late Night talk show, "The Rather Late Programme"

 

 

Including some self-mockery with the "I'm TV's Prince Charles", mocking his OWN usual bit where he refers to himself as "TV's Craig Ferguson".

Edited by Kromm

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Frankly, I don't want Craig to move to 11:30.  There's no way the earlier spot wouldn't necessitate nixing his quirky humor.  I love it but it's too niche for the mainstream.  I think Craig is capable of changing but I have a hunch he wouldn't be very happy.  He's good at what he does and it's been unfortunate to see the press be so dismissive of him because he appeals to an audience that differs from Fallon and Meyers.

And I really feel like Craig is being thrown under the bus when I read articles like this:

Chelsea Handler is in talks with CBS for a late-night talk show, an individual close to the producer and E! talk show host told TheWrap.

CBS contacted Handler to discuss the potential of hosting a syndicated show in the wake of her announcing this week that she's leaving E! when her contract expires at the end of the year. But Handler has told CBS that she isn't interested in that option. As a result, CBS then expressed interest in considering Handler for Craig Ferguson's 12:30 a.m. slot.

TheWrap

 

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I know they were courting John Oliver last year as well for a potentially syndicated show or the 12:30 a.m. spot before he chose HBO.

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Yeah, it's seeming more and more likely that he'll be out by the end of the year. I've been kind of figuring as much ever since he signed up to host that game show. CBS doesn't seem to want him for 11:30 and I doubt he'd be interested in following someone who isn't Letterman.

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Yeah, it's seeming more and more likely that he'll be out by the end of the year. I've been kind of figuring as much ever since he signed up to host that game show. CBS doesn't seem to want him for 11:30 and I doubt he'd be interested in following someone who isn't Letterman.

While he's been linked to Dave professionally for a long time (because Worldwide Pants produces his show), I don't know that it means he only wants to follow Dave. As for putting him likely not going to 11:30 totally on CBS, hasn't he himself expressed not wanting to do it?  Bags of money would be the only reason he's said he would, and he's the last person to try and claim he gets high enough ratings to deserve bags of money.

Ergo, I think there's a decent chance he might be perfectly happy staying at 12:30, as long as whoever takes 11:30 isn't someone he outright objects to for some reason (and I can't think of many of the names being tossed around that he would).  

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I do worry this is the beginning of the end for Craig.  If CBS doesn't feel he's fit for the 11:30 slot now, then they never will.  And while they're searching for a replacement for Letterman, they may want to try grooming someone else in the 12:30 slot in case Colbert, or whoever else, doesn't work out.  I also think they're pretty likely to put another white male in the 11:30 slot, so they may look to make waves by putting a woman or non-White male in the 12:30 slot.

It's not like Craig is protected by good ratings, either.  He's managed to stay on the air so long because he does a good show, and CBS probably recognizes it as such.  But it's been around 10 years now.  CBS may be ready to move on.  And, quite frankly, this may serve as the jolt that makes Craig decide that he's ready to move on.  He does come across as just a little bored every once in a while.

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I do worry this is the beginning of the end for Craig.  If CBS doesn't feel he's fit for the 11:30 slot now, then they never will.  And while they're searching for a replacement for Letterman, they may want to try grooming someone else in the 12:30 slot in case Colbert, or whoever else, doesn't work out.  I also think they're pretty likely to put another white male in the 11:30 slot, so they may look to make waves by putting a woman or non-White male in the 12:30 slot.

It's not like Craig is protected by good ratings, either.  He's managed to stay on the air so long because he does a good show, and CBS probably recognizes it as such.  But it's been around 10 years now.  CBS may be ready to move on.  And, quite frankly, this may serve as the jolt that makes Craig decide that he's ready to move on.  He does come across as just a little bored every once in a while.

I don't know for sure if he's really as doomed as you assume, however I will say that he wasn't JUST protected by having a "good show", he was also protected by... David Letterman.  Letterman's own assurances of staying with the network were long linked to him controlling the 12:30 slot as well via Worldwide Pants.  The moment keeping Dave around stops mattering could also very well be the moment that Worldwide Pants controlling 12:30 stops mattering.

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[Geoff mode on] The hell? [/Geoff mode off]

I like Geoff a lot. One of my favorite bits that still cracks me up every time is the "I've got a pad down there" in New Orleans. He and Craig cracking up together just tickles me.

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Neil Patrick Harris is my favorite guest of his. They have such a good time together.

[Geoff Peterson mode on] IN YOUR PANTS! [Geoff Peterson mode off]

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While he's been linked to Dave professionally for a long time (because Worldwide Pants produces his show), I don't know that it means he only wants to follow Dave. As for putting him likely not going to 11:30 totally on CBS, hasn't he himself expressed not wanting to do it?  Bags of money would be the only reason he's said he would, and he's the last person to try and claim he gets high enough ratings to deserve bags of money.

He himself has made statements that insinuated he may not be interested in sticking around to follow someone else.  He never said it outright but he has said that he'll loyally follow Dave as long as he's around.  I don't think it's a huge coincidence that their contracts tend to coincide--unlike Stewart and Colbert, for instance. 

Of course, he also said that he wasn't sure if he'd renew after his first contract and he eventually decided he would so I do think he's open to changing his mind should the opportunity arise.

Another thing to consider is another one of the reasons Craig didn't want the 11:30 slot. In addition to perhaps be hampered creatively (although I legitimately don't think that'd be a problem for Craig because while his humor is offbeat, it's generally silly and inoffensive) he considers himself LA based.  His son from his first marriage lives there and he's suggested he wouldn't want to be away from him while he was growing up.  He knew that moving the Late Late Show from NYC to LA wasn't very likely considering it seemed like the networks like the balance of having one 11:30 show based in LA and another based in NYC. They even made Conan move to LA. But when Jimmy moved The Tonight Show back to NY, the landscape changed a bit.  Now there is room for another 11:30 LA show.

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He himself has made statements that insinuated he may not be interested in sticking around to follow someone else.  He never said it outright but he has said that he'll loyally follow Dave as long as he's around.  I don't think it's a huge coincidence that their contracts tend to coincide--unlike Stewart and Colbert, for instance. 

Of course, he also said that he wasn't sure if he'd renew after his first contract and he eventually decided he would so I do think he's open to changing his mind should the opportunity arise.

Another thing to consider is another one of the reasons Craig didn't want the 11:30 slot. In addition to perhaps be hampered creatively (although I legitimately don't think that'd be a problem for Craig because while his humor is offbeat, it's generally silly and inoffensive) he considers himself LA based.  His son from his first marriage lives there and he's suggested he wouldn't want to be away from him while he was growing up.  He knew that moving the Late Late Show from NYC to LA wasn't very likely considering it seemed like the networks like the balance of having one 11:30 show based in LA and another based in NYC. They even made Conan move to LA. But when Jimmy moved The Tonight Show back to NY, the landscape changed a bit.  Now there is room for another 11:30 LA show.

His contracts were in lockstep with Dave's because the same company negotiated them--Worldwide Pants.  Dave's OWN contracts had Ferguson's treatment as a condition of his own.  In the strictest sense because Dave and Pants owned a piece of Craig, but also no doubt for personal reasons too.  

Part of that though was also due to the early-on notion that one of the two of them might go to ABC, for example, or FOX.  CBS wanted to lock that down, so they were perfectly willing to negotiate for both of them to stay.

That's what I meant when I said "The moment keeping Dave around stops mattering could also very well be the moment that Worldwide Pants controlling 12:30 stops mattering."  That it may not be Craig thinking he's done as much as him no longer being sheltered by Dave and Worldwide Pants.  CBS never cared that Craig had a good show--they cared that Dave did.  Now Dave will be gone.  That said, I also meant it when I said that this doesn't necessarily mean Craig is out the door. It really depends on if CBS wants to approach it as an all at once "late night reboot", or if they want to do it in stages.  A lot depends, I suppose, on how Craig's numbers are against Seth Meyers. I honestly have no idea--not a clue.  I think he was losing to Fallon when Fallon was at 12:30, but that doesn't mean the same is true with Meyers.

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Jim Parsons! Two funny guys who just make each other funnier. And they really seem to be enjoying themselves immensely.

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His contracts were in lockstep with Dave's because the same company negotiated them--Worldwide Pants.  Dave's OWN contracts had Ferguson's treatment as a condition of his own.  In the strictest sense because Dave and Pants owned a piece of Craig, but also no doubt for personal reasons too.  

Part of that though was also due to the early-on notion that one of the two of them might go to ABC, for example, or FOX.  CBS wanted to lock that down, so they were perfectly willing to negotiate for both of them to stay.

That's what I meant when I said "The moment keeping Dave around stops mattering could also very well be the moment that Worldwide Pants controlling 12:30 stops mattering."  That it may not be Craig thinking he's done as much as him no longer being sheltered by Dave and Worldwide Pants.  CBS never cared that Craig had a good show--they cared that Dave did.  Now Dave will be gone.  That said, I also meant it when I said that this doesn't necessarily mean Craig is out the door. It really depends on if CBS wants to approach it as an all at once "late night reboot", or if they want to do it in stages.  A lot depends, I suppose, on how Craig's numbers are against Seth Meyers. I honestly have no idea--not a clue.  I think he was losing to Fallon when Fallon was at 12:30, but that doesn't mean the same is true with Meyers.

This is why you hear all the Chelsea Handler talk. We likely know Ferguson won't get the 11:30PM slot, either by the network or his own decision. It has been over 10 years and does Ferguson want to follow on somebody's footsteps? Does he like what he is doing? There were at times Ferguson does seem bored at his own show. This is why Handler comes in. If Ferguson decides to step away, CBS has a backup plan with Chelsea Handler, who won't get the 11:30 PM slot because of her risks, but is a perfect fit for 12:30 AM for CBS. Ferguson is still the king-maker right now.

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Now knowing Colbert has the Late Show job, Ferguson has $5-8 million in his pocket. Now, does he stay or go? From the looks of it, I think he likes the announcement and would like to stay. Is CBS committed to him? I would think so since Ferguson now has a decent lead-in.

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Well, Craig is tight with Julie Chen & Les Moonves, so if Craig leaves, it will clearly be his own decision, and not a network-imposed exit. Though I don't really see him leaving the show for now... and to be honest, I don't really see CBS changing the entire line-up in 2014-2015 : if both Colbert & Craig's supposed replacements fail, what are they going to do ? They'll most likely want to see how Colbert will perform before thinking about changing the rest of the lineup, so Craig will probably reup for a couple of years, and depending on the landscape then, there might be some change. Maybe.

Edited by Kaoteek

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Craig will be guesting on Hot in Cleveland again tomorrow, Wednesday, April 16. TV Land, 10/9c -- check the listings in your region.

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Makes you wonder if she posted that photo just to mock people saying she's taking that job.

Because the only other "CBS job" possible would be a sitcom, or something like that.  Possible, of course, but in the past she's been more into producing sitcoms for other people (and they haven't done all that well).

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The second James McAvoy interview aka "Scottish vacuum of charm". He is best with old worlders: the English, Welsh, Irish and his fellow Scots.

In terms of his favourite ladies (there are many), I like him and Mila Kunis's chemistry especially that time they were in Edinburgh.

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