If you’ve been paying attention to the late night realm for the past week, you’ll know the press has placed a lot of attention on newcomer Stephen Colbert and the ratings he is bringing in compared to the other late night hosts. While The Late Show with Stephen Colbert has been nipping at The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon’s heels, Fallon recently told Ellen DeGeneres that there’s room for a variety of late night hosts out there. Speaking of Colbert, Fallon said:
He’s just, as you know, one of the nicest guys out there. And I think the more the merrier. I think it just brings more attention to late night and gets more people watching TV in general. So I think we all win. I mean, there’s room for everybody.
Fallon’s typically been known to be a pretty nice and often magnanimous guy, so his reaction to Ellen questioning how he feels about Stephen Colbert’s new gig is pretty standup, but not surprising. I mean, this is the former SNL castmember who spent his entire monologue speaking in reverential tones about the SNL 40 special the day after it aired. What Fallon is not talking about is the ratings battle that his late night show has been having with Colbert’s over the last several days.
The move comes just a few days after Stephen Colbert’s debut episode totally rocked out, crushing both Jimmy Fallon and Jimmy Kimmel’s late night shows in the ratings. While Colbert has continued to do better numbers than Kimmel, CBS and NBC’s shows have been a lot closer in the ratings; one night Colbert won in total viewership while Fallon slightly eked ahead in the 18-49 demographic. So, whether the two men like it or not, there is a little bit of competition there to see who will ultimately land that #1 slot.
In the episode of The Ellen Show, Fallon also talked to DeGeneres about the horrible finger injury he’s been dealing with for months now, as well as more regarding the late night landscape. You can check out the full clip, below.
As for Colbert, he’s made no bones about wanting to have a totally different show than Jimmy Fallon, who often focuses on celebrity games and goofy sketches to entice viewers. In recent weeks, Colbert has signed on a wide variety of people to appear on his show. Not only will there be celebrities and politicians, but Colbert also wants to talk to visionary CEOs, astronauts, and more, as well. His ability to interview well and his wide variety of guests should set him apart from the other late night hosts, but we’ll still have to wait and see how that translates in the numbers, longterm. Either way, Colbert is a welcome addition to the landscape, and it’s nice to see Jimmy Fallon feels the same way.
NBC’s The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon and CBS’ The Late Show with Stephen Colbert both air on weeknights at 11:35 p.m. ET. In addition, here’s what else is premiering this fall.