Well, sort of. But not exactly.
But Daniel, Maria, Rashmi and I did go to a taping of Late Night with Jimmy Fallon the other day, largely because we all love The Roots, who against all conventional wisdom took the gig as Fallon's house band. Very smart move by NBC, which guaranteed that there would be a strong, solid life force keeping this patient going, at least through the first few weeks, which, perhaps unsurprisingly, have seen our host bearing more than a passing resemblance to a deer caught in headlights.
I'm happy to say that the program we saw was funny and engaging. Jimmy still seems too nervous for someone who's ostensibly running the show, but he is doing way better than he was during his first week. They may want to figure out some clever alternative to the traditional Tell-Jokes-at-the-Audience-Opening-Monologathon, because he really is working too hard for that to be as effective as it needs to be. And I think that it's well past time to set that aside as the unalterable formula for late night television.
The best, funniest, most alive moments happened off the cuff, when Jimmy was chatting with us, or his guests (which included Rachel Maddow - he had an really good bit about mispronouncing her name while shooting a local-tv promo. If NBC is smart, that made it to air on at least one of their affiliate stations.) in between the scripted segments. And when he was at his best, it was really good stuff. Keep plugging, Jimmy - we're on your side.
Oh, and The Roots were amazing, natch. A-maz-ing.
Thanks to Susan for the fun cameraphone photo, Times Square flaring up in the background!