Monday, October 1, 1962: Johnny Carson

Johnny Carson takes over as permanent host of NBC's "The Tonight Show." He would host the show until 1992.

From Cynthia Lowry of The Associated Press (October 3 story):

  NBC's "Tonight Show" with Johnny Carson as its new pilot, took off smoothly this week, Johnny was agreeable, exhibited occasional flashes of gentle wit and seemed poised and sure of himself.
  It is unfair to review a program of this type -- largely spontaneous and depending heavily on the entertainment value of its guest stars -- until it has had a few test flights.
  This viewer's initial reaction was that the show was so smooth and bland, the conversation so polite -- and the commercials so all-encompassing -- that the program was hardly worth the sacrifice of a couple of hours of sleep. But again, Carson must have a chance to get rolling.

* Audio clip of first show (Carson was introduced by Groucho Marx): @
* "Johnny Carson: King of Late Night" (from PBS.org): @
* "The Tonight Show" entry from The Museum of Broadcast Communications: @
* Carson entry from "Encyclopedia of Television": @
* www.johnnycarson.com: @ 

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