late night hosts during coronavirus

Late night shows were one of the first in the entertainment industry to take a hit from the growing coronavirus pandemic, as many of the live shows depended on audiences who were mostly older and from out of town. As the late night shows shut down to curb the spread of coronavirus, aka COVID-19, the TV hosts were left to self-quarantine themselves at home. And what are a bunch of entertainers going to do at home? Well, put on a show, of course.

The Tonight Show, Jimmy Kimmel Live, The Late Show, andThe Daily Show all aired special “at home editions” of their shows, as hosts Jimmy Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel, Stephen Colbert, and Trevor Noah transformed into vloggers for a night. The homey sequences, which include Fallon playing guitar and delivering a monologue with the help of his daughter, and Stephen Colbert lighting a fire in his backyard, are actually quite charming and a smart way to keep their late-night audiences engaged as they’re stuck at home too.

Without celebrities to gush over (and continually interrupt), Jimmy Fallon reminds us why he got The Tonight Show gig by being a little charmer in this special “At Home” edition. Fallon’s wife and 6-year-old daughter both pitch in for this budget version of The Tonight Show, complete with a shaky out-of-focus camera and a cutely misspelled graphic. Fallon reads jokes his writers sent him from his “panic room — I mean living room,” eats Irish Soda Bread to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, and sings a little ode to quarantine. It’s sweet and actually kind of charming. But you gotta get a better camera if you want to be a real vlogger, Jimmy.

Meanwhile, Jimmy Kimmel went even more barebones with a monologue delivered from his own office (after hiding from his kids that he had just “discovered” he had), shot from what it looks like is his own phone. But he’s decked out in St. Patrick’s Day garb, wearing a green Guinness shirt and dyeing hand sanitizer.

In an apocalpyse, Colbert would be the one with an already fully-stocked underground shelter. The Late Show host delivered a monologue from his bathtub Monday night in a special “social distancing” edition. On Tuesday, the comedian “discovered fire” in his backyard and broke out a Trump impression. His has the highest-budget of the late night TV hosts, including opening credits, graphics, cuts to news clips, and even a video of his band leader John Batiste playing piano from his own house. Colbert and Batiste perform a socially-distant duet of “Oh, Danny Boy” to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.

Meanwhile, Trevor Noah went for shorter sketches for The Daily Show, uploading one video that included “cleaning tips” for the coronavirus, in which he cleans everything in his house, including the water coming out of his tap.

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