02 January 2008


Letterman is back on CBS tonight (Ferguson tomorrow) with a WGA approved contract while Leno and Conan on NBC and Jimmy Kimmel on ABC are back and are going to wing it without (supposedly) written material.

Kimmel leads off with Andy Dick, Helio Castroneves and Kid Rock. Leno has a big booking with Gov. Mike Huckabee (which may not sit well with Iowa Caucus goers that he's flying out to LA the day before the vote), Letterman is leading off with Robin Williams (?) and Hillary Clinton (showing how she's full of solidarity, or something), and Conan will wiggle around and make goofy faces for the entire timeslot (OK, that may or may not be true).

Should make for interesting viewing.

Jimmy should do the best, Letterman had checked out of his show long ago, and his writers will be too obsessed with taking digs at the AMPTP to actually bother and create funny material. Ferguson might be lively, though. Guests over the next few weeks will lavish praise upon Letterman for caving into the WGA's demands (which given that Letterman doesn't own the internet rights he gave away, was making a pretty empty gesture).

I plan on watching all the shows tonight, thanks to the miracle of having two tuners in my computer (I'll record CBS and NBC, watch ABC).

The producers are prepared to hold out until the SAG contract comes up, and if the public doesn't shun NBC and ABC in favor of the union approved CBS content, then that will be a big blow to solidarity. Booking will be difficult at NBC and ABC, but the producers will put all sorts of pressure on celebrities to show up and cross the picket lines. I expect some resistance to begin with, but as the strike drags on, the promo machine will march on like the strike wasn't on.

It should get interesting next week, also, with Stewart and Colbert going back to work, and given their lefty darling status, it will be difficult to square their picket line crossing with their "progressive" credentials.


AP has an article up (via Drudge), here's some details as to the picketing, and the politicking surrounding the late night shows. The article is slantedly pro-union, but that's to be expected.

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