Johnny Carson confronts Don Rickles

One of the funniest thing I ever saw from the old Tonight Show clips was when Bob Newhart guest hosted on December 13th, 1976. He had Don Rickles on as a guest and during one of his jokes, he was using Johnny’s cirgarette box as a stamp and when he slammed it on the desk, he broke the lid! Johnny comes back the next night and finds the broken box and decides to raid Don’s live taping of his tv show C.P.O. Sharkey! This clip just goes to show how Johnny Carson was bigger than anybody and he could do whatever he wanted.


I just found a different site that has video of both nights in one clip, however, I’m leaving the one above because it shows a little bit more at the end. So if you want to see the night when the box was broken, watch the beginning of this video:


Rich Little doing Johnny Carson

The year was 1970 and Dean Martin was hosting the New York Friars’ Club roast in a week-long special dedicated to the great Johnny Carson. In true Rich Little form, he comes out and does great impressions of Dean Martin, Joey Bishop, Jack Benny, George Burns, Truman Capote and of course Johnny Carson. The best part of his impression for Johnny was that he mimicks his manurisms and nervous ticks. If you’ve watched Johnny during the years, you’ll get a kick out of this…


Jimmy Stewart on Johnny Carson reading a poem

I really loved this clip of Jimmy Stewart on Johnny Carson back in 1981. For those of you who aren’t aware, Jimmy Stewart was an avid poetry writer and for this occasion, he wrote a poem about his dog Beau that had just recently died. It starts out pretty funny, but then gets a serious overlay as you can hear him start referring to Beau in a past tense. Jimmy then gets fairly emotional at the end and even gets Johnny a little teary.


If you just want to read the poem, here it is:

Beau by Jimmy Stewart

He never came to me when I would call unless I had a tennis ball–or he felt like it.
But mostly, he didn’t come at all.
When he was young, he never learned to heel, or sit, or stay–he did things his way.
Discipline was not his bag, but when you were with him things sure didn’t drag.

He’d dig up a rose bush just to spite me and when I’d grab him, he’d turn bite me.
He bit lots of folks from day to day–the delivery boy was his favorite prey.
The gas man wouldn’t read our meter. He said we owned a real man-eater.
He set the house on fire, but the story’s long to tell.
Suffice to say that he survived and the house survived as well.

And on evening walks–and Gloria took him, he was always first out the door,
The old one and I brought up the rear because our bones were sore.
And he’d charge up the street with mom hanging on–what a beautiful pair they were.
And if it was still light and the tourists were out, they created a bit of a stir.
But every once in a while, he’d stop in his tracks and with a frown on his face, look around.
It was just to make sure that the old one was there to follow him where he was bound.

We’re early to bedders in our house, I guess I’m the first to retire,
And as I’d leave the room, he’d look at me and get up from his place by the fire.
He knew where the tennis balls were upstairs and I’d give him one for a while
And he’d push it under the bed with his nose and I’d dig it out with a smile

But before very long, he’d tire the ball and he’d be asleep in his corner in no time at all.
And there were nights when I’d feel him climb upon our bed and lie between us and I’d pat his head.
And there were nights when I’d feel his stare and I’d wake up and he’d be sitting there,
And I’d reach out to stroke his hair and sometimes I’d feel him sigh and I think I know the reason why.
He’d wake up at night and he would have this fear,
Of the dark, of life, of lots of things and he’d be glad to have me near.

And now he’s dead

And there are nights when I think I feel him climb upon our bed and lie between us and I pat his head.
And there are nights when I think I feel that stare and I reach out my hand to stroke his hair
And he’s not there.
Oh how I wish that wasn’t so, I’ll always love a dog named Beau.

Johnny Carson mixes well with the animals

I think of all the shows I’ve seen where they bring out animals to see what kind of crazy things will happen, this clip tops the cake. In a funny bit of irony, Johnny makes a joke saying that he should wear one of the animals on his head and be Fess Parker (actor who played Davy Crockett) and sure enough, the little guy actually crawls onto Johnny’s head and makes his joke literal! The two zoologists in the clip were Jim Fowler and Joan Embery. Enjoy.


Johnny Carson makes last tv appearance

I, like many was a big fan of Johnny Carson and although I was only born in 1982, I can still remember watching some of the last shows. I always loved this video clip from David Letterman’s Late show where Johnny Carson makes a suprise appearance to a standing ovation that goes on for a minute twenty. According to some research I did on this clip, Johnny was supposed to come out and tell a joke, but is either too emotional to do so or was still getting over a minor sickness. Either way, you can see the moment where he aborts the original plan and decides to walk off the stage for the last time.

I have to mention that I think this was one of the most memorable moments in television history. Enjoy.