Watching late-night television has been quite different since the COVID-19 pandemic pushed everyone into quarantine last year. This led many late-night shows to limit their audiences or going completely virtual, which was the case for The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. So with restrictions now slowly being lifted, Jimmy Fallon has now welcomed a full live audience, and he had the perfect reaction to his first packed house in over a year.
Broadcasting virtually and having a limited audience made the show different for Jimmy Fallon and the viewers, to say the least. Those who've either watched or have worked within the world of late-night TV are definitely used to having a very specific atmosphere, and the studio audience plays a major role in that. So you can imagine that finally having full audience again was incredibly special to Fallon. In the opening moments of his monologue, The Tonight Show host said about the amazing moment:
Welcome, thank you. Welcome to The Tonight Show, everybody! We have comedy, we have celebrities. We have music. We have a full audience tonight!
In a rare moment of late-night television, The Tonight Show host seemed taken aback by the live audience. Jimmy Fallon seemed a little emotional and overwhelmed by the audience’s presence, as he stood back for a moment before murmuring “Wow.” Fallon appeared to be more in awe of being in a full studio than even the show's attendees.
But given that this was Jimmy Fallon's first full audience since the pandemic began, it’s only right for him to take the moment in. Despite some bumpy moments during the pandemic, Fallon seemed grateful to be in front of a live audience again. You can see Fallon's full monologue by watching The Tonight Show clip below:
As mentioned, the late-night landscape has been a bit different for Jimmy Fallon and his late-night cohorts, since limited capacity and other COVID restrictions went into effect last year. Fallon spent most of the quarantine hosting the NBC chatfest from his home, leading to some touching and surprising moments.
Eventually, once restrictions started to be lifted, the late-night host returned to Rockefeller Plaza but with just a skeleton crew and house band, a limited audience and virtual guest interviews. And despite some limitations and behind-the-scenes shakeups, the show still managed to create some funny (and questionable) moments during the pandemic.
Now, with full live audiences returning to television, Jimmy Fallon and the late-night institution has the potential to be just as vibrant and fun as it was before the pandemic began. Fallon will hopefully be able to feed off the audience energy that was missing during the pandemic, as a live audience and in-studio guests should bring things back around.
If you want to see The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon with a full audience, you can catch it weeknights at 11:35 pm EST on NBC.