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Late Night Talk Show Hosts Jimmy Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel, and Stephen Colbert: Who Is Your Favorite?

Updated on July 30, 2018
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Ratings of the Most Watched Late Night Host
Place
Stephen Colbert
First
Jimmy Fallon
Second
Jimmy Kimmel
Third

Late Night Television

It seems to be a personal preference which one of the three talented comedians the public watches. Unfortunately, all three of the late night shows air at the very same time. After the nightly news goes off, the late night talk shows air at 11:35 p.m. with similar formats.

All three of the late-night shows have some things in common. You can see from the charts below how they are similar and how they are different. This might help you make up your mind which one will be your favorite unless you already have one that you prefer watching.

Network
Name of Show
Host of Show
ABC
"Jimmy Kimmel Live!
Jimmy Kimmel
CBS
"The Late Show with Stephen Colbert"
Stephen Colbert
NBC
"The Late Show Starring Jimmy Fallon"
Jimmy Fallon
Format of "The Late Show Starring Stephen Colbert
Format
Announcer
Program writer Jen Spyra.
Sidekick
No sidekick; sometimes uses producers and audience members
Band
Stay Human
Opening Number
Monologue, usually topics on American politics and especially President Donald Trump
Guests
A-List Celebrities
Setting
Ed Sullivan Theater in New York City
Number of Seasons
3
Number of Episodes
427
Other
Show is taped

'The Late Show with Stephen Colbert'

"The Late Show with Stephen Colbert" is now the most-watched late night television host. At one time it was "The Late Night Starring Jimmy Fallon." Now the two shows have switched places after the latter show decline by 31 percent.

Colbert doesn't mind taking jabs President Donald Trump much more than Fallon. Anti-Trump viewers tend to favor Colbert over Fallon in that particular area.

The 53-year-old comedian doesn't hold back on politics and the Trump administration. Colbert's ratings are up over what it was a year ago before Trump became President of the United States.

That's really good news for Colbert but not so much for Fallon who is more into games and music instead of politics.

'The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon'

Jimmy Fallon isn't getting the ratings his two competitors are getting because he doesn't do many of the anti-Trump jobs. Therefore, "The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon" has moved from the top show to the second one.

It is noticeable that Fallon does not tell political jobs, especially about President Donald Trump.

There is one big thing that Fallon has going for him is that he still has the younger crowd as his viewers. That works well with advertisers who cater to viewers in the 18-to-49 age group.

Fallon's average is way down from what it used to be. In 2015, he had nearly 4 million viewers per episode. By 2015, it had dropped to 3.5 million each night. In 2017, he’s getting just over 2.5 million a show.

Stephen Colbert has taken the No. 1 slot, and Fallon has dropped to the position and is in the middle of the pack. Jimmy Kimmel remains in the third place even though he is picking up some of Fallon's former viewers.

Since the late Johnny Carson hosted the "Tonight Show" over 30 years, it would be interesting to know what advice he would give Fallon who is carrying on in his footsteps.

The Tonight Show Hosts
Number of Episodes
Dates
Steve Allen, Ernie Kovac, Jack Lescoulie, Al "Jazzbo" Collins, Jack Paar
2,000
September 27, 1954 - September 28, 1962
Johnny Carson
4,531
October 1, 1962 - May 22, 1992
Jay Leno
3,775
May 25, 1992 - May 29, 2009
Conan O'Brien
146
June 1, 2009 - January 22, 2010
Jay Leno
835
March 1, 2010 - February 6, 2014
Jimmy Fallon
758
February 17, 2014 - present
"The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon
 
Announcer
Steve Higgins
Sidekick
Steve Higgins
Band
The Roots
Opening Number
Monologue
Guests
A-List Celebritieis
Setting
Studio 6B in Rockefeller Center in New York
Number of Seasons
5
Number of Episodes
758
Other
 

'Jimmy Kimmel Live!'

Jimmy Kimmel's ABC show is in third place, but he is moving up a bit in ratings.

The 49-year-old comedian's ratings went up a little after his recent monologues about health care and gun control. However, it hasn't been enough for his show to move up and out of third place.

"Jimmy Kimmel Live"
 
Announcer
Dicky Barrett
Sidekick
Guillermo
Band
A musical selection is performed at the end of the show on an indoor or outdoor stage or on location.
Opening Number
Monologue
Guests
A-List Celebrities
Setting
Hollywood
Number of Seasons
14
Number of Episodes
2,694
Other
Despite its name, the show is not live. It is taped at 4 p.m.

Which late-night host do you watch?

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