The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson: the Scotsman and crew in Paris

Amongst American late night talk shows, The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson stands out for its uniqueness. Ferguson literally rips up guest's "talking point" cards before interviews to engage in actual conversations. He does a largely improvised monologue. He has a gay robot skeleton sidekick named Geoff Peterson. He has a dancing horse named Secretariat, who admittedly is just two guys in a horse costume.

And now, he's branching out again as he has taken his show to Paris for a week.

craig ferguson

The episodes were taped a while ago, but are just being aired this week. I was intrigued to see how the show was going to look for these Paris episodes, and Monday gave us our first glimpse. The show's opening wasn't atypical. Craig Ferguson lip synced and danced to a French song with the help of some of his usual compatriots and puppets. Then, he threw his red, white, and blue Eiffel Tower up in the air, and when it fell to Earth, Craig was standing in front of the actual Eiffel Tower.

The first episode did not follow the usual format for The Late Late Show. A lot of Craig's old bits, which haven't been on the shown all that often for months, were trotted back out with French themes. There was French Aquaman, Michael Caine in Space in Paris, and others. As for the stuff actually shot in Paris, it was as much a travelogue as it was a talk show. Geoff Peterson and Secretariat were there, as well as Kristen Bell, one of Ferguson's favorite and more frequent guests. She is serving as sort of his human sidekick for this week, playing up her "feud" with Geoff.

The two of them visited the Eiffel Tower, from where they espied Secretariat dancing throughout the city of Paris. They ate at a fancy French restaurant alongside actor Jean Reno, whom Craig interviewed. They apparently rented a double decker bus for the week, on which Craig interviewed French talk show host Arthur as they drove through the city. He also answered some e-mails outside of a English language bookstore along with the store's owner.

This was a decidely low rent trip. Ferguson's desk is basically a card table, and the camera quality for the stuff shot outside is less than you normally see on television. During the interview with Arthur, the two had to yell while driving through a tunnel. Despite all that, it was a really good opening episode. Granted, Craig Ferguson is my favorite late night host to begin with, and I watch his show every night, so he didn't really have to do much to sway me on the whole Paris thing. That being said, the change of venue provided a lot of different and interesting moments for the show. Typically, a late night talk show takes place almost entirely within a studio. Occasionally, there will be a remote bit. They don't feature the host talking to a celebrity in front of the Eiffel Tower. Even sitting behind a card table with a gay robot skeleton sidekick standing nearby, it was a sight to behold.

In the first episode, Ferguson took advantage of the new surroundings to their fullest. The show was sharp, funny, and a nice change of pace from what people are accustomed to seeing. I expect that to continue throughout the week, even if the novelty may wear off a bit. There is still plenty for him to explore in Paris, and he still has Bell to play off of. Even with less interviews to conduct, or a monologue to perform, the show doesn't lack for content. Plus, the lag between shooting and showing the episodes allowed them to trim some fat I imagine. As such, if you don't usually watch The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, or even late night talk shows in general, you may want to catch a bit of the show this week while it is in Paris.

By Chris Morgan

About the author

Chris Morgan has written for an abundance of websites. He once cowrote a show for The Second City in Detroit. It was closed soon after. He has a podcast: http://cheers.libsyn.com/rss He wrote a novel: http://www.amazon.com/Smoke-Gets-Your-Eyes-ebook/dp/B00961KJNW/

More From Chris Morgan

A tense episode interspersed with darkly funny awkwardness.
Read More
One thing is for sure: I'm moving Todd to the top of the "Most Likely To Die" list.
Read More
Walt and Skyler's relationship has once again completely fallen apart.
Read More
1 Comment
On: Wednesday, August 3, 2011
Eric - TV Geek Army "Revered Leader" said:

The Daily Show is the only talk show that I find interesting these days, but admittendly I've not given Ferguson much of a chance. I definitely appreciate the ambition and attempt to do something different -- great news piece and coverage Chris !

Name:

Email (Will not be used):

Comment:

characters left
 

Featured Articles

Popular Today

 
 

Recent Comments

Parks and Recreation: why is everyone so mean to Jerry?
It's funny because its so not funny.
The Boonies: National Geographic's off the grid reality exploit
I too live on the island and ISLANDER does not know what they are talking about. Dan lives out in the middle of the island with...
The Boonies: National Geographic's off the grid reality exploit
this is not real i know that goat and it is not "doc's" its my neighbors goat. and by the way i live on the very top of that mountain...
Parks and Recreation: why is everyone so mean to Jerry?
I just finished the series on Netflix and can not wrap my mind around how he is treated. I never found humor in any of the scenes...
Swamp People, "It's Personal": men at work
Wow, very hard work , 1st they are hooked with a hook in there mouth , 2nd they come along with a shot gun and shoots it in the...
Stitchers: everything changes in the finale, "All In"
I think something is up with Nina--to me, it looked like something just occurred to her and she got up to go do it or find out about...
Stitchers: everything changes in the finale, "All In"
Am I the only one who thinks that something bad is going to happen to Nina based on the brief cut of her during Cameron's closing...
My Last Days: powerful documentary airs on the CW Network
I received a wonderful compliment from Justin Baldoni in regard to this article, he said, "Wow thank you for this beautiful article...
Hoarders: Buried Alive, "Stop Touching My Stuff!": my kind of clean
I have lost people greatly I've had severe depression since 12 I'm 43.luckily for me I was not a harder. This was the first show...