I haven’t watched David Letterman in a long time, not because I lost my taste for him, but because the realities of my day job forced me to leave late-night teevee behind. However, even though I had an appreciation for Jay Leno, I was always more of a Letterman guy. I personally always thought he was an underrated interviewer, but by and large, I always loved his completely off-kilter humor. You never really knew what was going to happen next with Letterman.
So here is my personal tribute to him and his years of late-night hilarity, in his iconic form of a top-ten list.
10. The Top Ten Words that Sound Better When Said by James Earl Jones. (I couldn’t find a video clip.)
9. Dick Assman!
8. The Donut-a-pult. This was an ongoing gag in which Letterman kept revising his concept for a catapult that would shoot donuts into the audience. They eventually came up with one so powerful that it exploded the powdered-sugar donut into a cloud of sugar.
7. The Quiz Machine. This was always fun and goofy.
6. Stupid Pet Tricks was always fun, and this one was my favorite:
5. Let’s look for Swedes!
4. Emma Thompson visits and shares her thoughts on pie-throwing.
3. Oprah, Uma.
2. Occasionally Letterman would lower his guard and let his real opinions come out. It was always interesting when this happened. One night, for some reason someone mentioned that President Bush was going to be on The Tonight Show, and Letterman muttered, “Yeah, there’s a real summit meeting.”
1. Letterman after 9-11-01.
So long, Dave!
In his first season he introduced the "Guy Under the Seats," routine. Chris Elliott got his start in that role. I always stayed up for Letterman back then and just napped in my car during my lunch break.