Seth Meyers was the first and only late night host to say a few words about David Letterman’s recent retirement announcement.
“This [Late Night] was David Letterman’s show. If it wasn’t for David Letterman, this show wouldn’t exist. If it wasn’t for David Letterman, I wouldn’t be here,” Meyers said after his opening monologue Thursday night. “And if I wasn’t here, then you’d just be an empty audience looking at nothing.”
Meyers confessed while he was too young to watch Johnny Carson growing up, he was around for Letterman’s rise to the top, and cherished the show as a young kid.
“I grew up on Letterman. I had discovered Johnny Carson a few years later, I was too young for him, but I grew up on Letterman. But Letterman for me was a show that you had a cool uncle, or one of your friends had a cool older brother that told you to watch.” he said.
Meyers even took a moment to reflect on the times he appeared on Letterman’s show as a guest, during his 13 year run on Saturday Night Live as a writer and performer.
“The first time I went on I was so excited. The second time I went on, I was even more excited be there because I didn’t totally screw everything up,” Meyers said, pausing before adding one last memory. “The last time I was on the show was just before I took over Late Night here and he said he always wanted to call it the Tomorrow Show, and now that you [Meyers] have it back, you should call it the Tomorrow Show again.”
“He’s probably right, but I could never call it the Tomorrow Show because Letterman was on Late Night and this is David Letterman’s show,” he finished to a rousing round of applause for the audience.
Interestingly enough, Meyers was the only comedian who took a couple of minutes to pay homage to the late night veteran.
Although taking into account that Late Night with Jimmy Kimmel and the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon probably filmed around the same time as Letterman’s announcement, there’s a better chance the current late night hosts will pay tribute to Letterman tomorrow night.
The two hosts did give their pal “Dave” individual shout outs, though. Jimmy Kimmel praised his late night competition and long time friend over Twitter and Jimmy Fallon told The Hollywood Reporter, “”Dave’s the greatest. One of the true innovators in TV history. He’s made all of us better.”
As for Letterman’s CBS late night comrade Craig Ferguson, host of the Late, Late Show with Craig Ferguson, he’s on a repeat schedule this week and will most likely not be saying anything about the subject until he’s back in the studio on Monday.
Letterman is set to retire in 2015.