While the boys over at NBC continue to war in what I like to call Jayocalypse 2: Sometimes They Come Back, the late night fiasco has highlighted an even larger and insidious problem. There continue to be no women on primetime late night. Sure, Chelsea Handler does her thing on E! And Wanda Sykes gets her groove on Saturdays on Fox. But on the major networks it’s just dudes as far as the eye can see: Conan, Jay, Dave, Jimmy, Craig, that other Jimmy and Carson.
So until this all shakes out and NBC announces its new plan to air Jay Leno at 10:00, 11:35, 12:35 and 1:35 daily, why don’t we help the network brass to really think outside of the box. There are countless talented, hilarious and highly-capable women who could host The Tonight Show, or any other late night program for that matter. Here are just a few.
Ellen DeGeneres: Ellen is already making the switch from daytime to primetime with her judging gig on American Idol. In fact, with her charm and winsomeness, she might even out Johnny Carson Johnny Carson.
Wanda Sykes: Funny doesn’t even begin to describe her. Sure, her new show is a work in progress. But if you like your headlines sliced and diced like a chef at Benihana, Wanda is your gal.
Chelsea Handler: She already does it every night (yes, dirty pun intended — this is Chelsea we’re talking about).
Jane Lynch: Preferably, in character as Sue Sylvester.
Sarah Silverman: Think of the Sarah Silverman vs. Jimmy Kimmel potential, people. Everyone loves it when exes square off.
Margaret Cho: Because late night could use more sassy Asian energy – or any for that matter.
So, what other women could sit comfortably behind the desk at The Tonight Show? And, for the record, Team Conan.