Late-Night Shows See Audiences Plummet After Replacing Comedy with Political Hate-Speech

Craig Bannister | October 7, 2022 | 5:20pm EDT
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Jimmy Kimmel

Late-night “comedy” programs have replaced humor with politicized hate-speech, and the result has cost them dearly, in terms of viewers, Fox News Digital Media Reporter Joseph A. Wulfsohn explains in a new analysis.

In his piece, Wulfsohn traces the shift from comedy to political savagery to back to Stephen Colbert’s vulgar, on-air slur of then-President Donald Trump:

“An early sign of this dramatic shift in comedy was in May 2017 when ‘The Late Show’ host Stephen Colbert told Trump, ‘The only thing your mouth is good for is being Vladimir Putin's c--- holster.’"

“The shrinking audiences have been systemic among the liberal comics,” Wulfsohn notes:

  • “In 2016, ‘Jimmy Kimmel Live’ (ABC) averaged 2.2 million viewers. In 2022, he's plummeted to 1.5 million, losing more than a third of his audience.”
  • “CBS' ‘The Late Late Show’ starring James Corden has lost 36% of its viewers since 2016, now averaging an audience of 819,000.”
  • “NBC's ‘Late Night with Seth Meyers’ has slashed nearly half of its viewers between 2016 and 2022, going from roughly 1.5 million to 786,000.”
  • “HBO's ‘Last Week Tonight with John Oliver’ has lost nearly 60% of its viewers since 2017, drawing an average 528,000 viewers this year.”
  • “Conan O'Brien ended his struggling TBS program last year after losing 57% of his audience from 2016 to less than a quarter million viewers.”
  • “TBS canceled ‘Full Frontal with Samantha Bee,’ as the far-left host lost a whopping 79% from her 2017 audience average of 1.25 million viewers to 268,000 viewers.”
  • Trevor Noah, who took over Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show” in 2015, has announced his retirement, after his show’s audience fell from a peak of 2.5 million viewers to fewer than 400,000 in recent months.
  • NBC’s "Saturday Night Live" averaged 7.4 million viewers in 2017, but has just 4.7 million viewers in 2022.

Read “Late-night comedy flounders in ratings as Colbert, Kimmel, others openly root for Democrats, shred Republicans” by Joseph A. Wulfsohn

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