In Defense of Jimmy Fallon

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There were plenty of critics when Jimmy Fallon took over NBC’s Late Night in 2008. I was skeptical, I’ll admit, but I’ve been won over by the past several seasons of the show. Fallon has this boyish charm that dismantles cynicism, resulting in some truly amazing interviews and highly collaborative efforts. Where Conan’s following fed off wry humor, irony, and the sometimes absurd, Fallon generates fan loyalty with something much more unexpected: Sincerity.

Jimmy Fallon is just a nice guy, and I think it comes across genuinely. It may have taken him a moment to land on his late-night feet, but Fallon’s sincerity is the momentum that makes Late Night so damned engaging. In episode #82 of the Nerdist Podcasts, Fallon explains that Late Show announcer (and full time SNL producer) Steve Higgens is there “just for the love of it, for the fun of it. I think that’s what are show is all about.”

Fallon is having fun. The best part? It sells, it’s profitable, it makes NBC money. This is exactly how business, let alone entrainment, should work. It should run on authenticity. As another piece of evidence in there never-ending court case of “Cynics V. Jimmy Fallon,” the recent Late Night rendition of “All I Want for Christmas” is as sincere as it gets.

Do you see Jimmy Fallon’s face? He is as happy as the kids he’s singing with. Fallon, with The Roots and Mariah, perfectly performs a kindergarten arrangement with absolute grace. Yes, they’re acting like children, but if there’s anytime such actions are needed, it’s Christmas.

I hope this says something about culture, and more specifically the direction in which culture is headed. We need a change. Cynicism is the worst, and while we’re fresh from a hangover of 90′s sarcasm and low-blows, it’s still a preferred mechanic. It all boils down to negativity. Fallon, on the other hand, promotes sincerity and positivity, and people love it. I think—and I hope—that means something.

As a bonus, here’s a bit from the Emmys a few years back, where Jimmy Fallon and friends performed “Born to Run.” If it doesn’t give you chills, then please stop reading my blog.

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14 thoughts on “In Defense of Jimmy Fallon

  1. He’s not a douche. I think he’s sincere, and I’m with you that that’s what our culture needs and craves. Also, he’s cute. The End.

  2. “Do you see Jimmy Fallon’s face? He is as happy as the kids he’s singing with. Fallon, with The Roots and Mariah, perfectly performs a kindergarten arrangement with absolute grace. Yes, they’re acting like children, but if there’s anytime such actions are needed, it’s Christmas.” I was just talking about Jimmy the other day with a friend. The other night I caught myself smiling like a child just because I was so excited by the fact that he and his guests were having such a blast. I wanted to be apart of their fun. If anyone deserves success, it’s Jimmy Fallon_He gets me.

    Great article, Dave P.

  3. I agree Dave! Fallon get’s a bad rap because his films don’t capture his spirit. In fact, I think they completely miss it. The man belongs on live (or mostly unedited) television.

    His personality is so addictive. How many people waited for SNL skits that included Fallon, because he’d always lose it and start cracking up? Those were my favorite sketches, because the people on screen were having such a wonderful time.

    • That’s a good point. My favorite part of the famous “cowbell” skit is watching Fallon break.

      Well, maybe it’s Will Ferrel’s belly. But Fallon is a close second.

  4. Pingback: Page not found | Boy Android

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