Matt Towery

If you are over the age of 49, you need to take the story of a comedian and a hopelessly lost television network seriously. And even if you are younger, it's worth considering that you likely hope to live way past 49, as well. I might add that if you are a conservative or Republican, you need to check your ideology and political affiliation at the door for a moment.

Yes, North Korea is rattling its saber again, and Iran continues to threaten Israel. But those are like repeats of The Tonight Show, old news. No, we have a bigger battle looming here. We all know that the world of television and its advertisers value the youngest of viewers the most. I mean, after all, the youngest viewers have so much disposable income and routinely settle down to watch 11:30 p.m. network entertainment shows -- not!

And, yes, I know that Jay Leno, like most on network TV, is a self-proclaimed "liberal," but I could care less. Next to David Letterman, he looks like Barry Goldwater.

The problem is that Leno -- the most watched late night host in America -- happens to be in his sixties. You see, the jerks at Comcast - who, in my opinion, ought to get their horrible customer service and often crummy reception under control first -- have reportedly decided, through their new brilliant leadership of NBC, to shove Leno aside in favor of a Jimmy Fallon-hosted and New York-based Tonight Show.

Fallon is a likeable and funny guy. And he is in his thirties so he has greater potential to appeal to younger viewers in years to come. I get all of that. But what puzzles me is why a guy who has continually won the ratings war and is, by virtually every account, a good and decent man, has to be jerked around by a network whose news department seems an adjunct of a presidential administration and has some of the worst primetime programming since the days of My Mother the Car.

This is all about age and ego. Comcast takes over NBC, so of course they have to apply their "corporate culture" to everything, including one of the few shows they have that isn't in the tank. What next, will they yank SNL because they deem Lorne Michaels is too darn old to know what's funny? Perhaps they can replace him with their MSNBC talk show host, the Reverend Al Sharpton. Listening to him struggle on air is about as funny as anything the owners of NBC and its related companies seem to be capable of producing.


Matt Towery

Matt Towery is a former National Republican legislator of the year and author of Powerchicks: How Women Will Dominate America.
 
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