After longtime "Late Show" comedy booker Eddie Brill was relieved of his booking duties due to comments he made about female stand-ups at the beginning of the year, numbers show that in the first part of 2012, late night TV stand-up remains primarily a white man's game.
Sean McCarthy of The Comic's Comic crunched the numbers and discovered that out of 48 late night TV stand-up performances in the first six months of 2012, only two women and nine non-white men took the stage.
Since Brill's departure from booking, "The Late Show" has had no female comics perform in the first half of 2012 (and out of the 11 male performers only one, Joe Wong, was non-white), and stand-up acts were nearly entirely non-existent on Jay Leno's "Tonight Show" and "Jimmy Kimmel Live." In contrast, Conan O'Brien's TBS program has had the most (and most diverse) comics perform in the first part of this year. Although 18 of the 23 performers were white men, one woman (Erin Foley) as well as Hannibal Buress, Kumail Nanjiani, Owen Smith and Dwayne Perkins performed their acts.
If July episodes of "Conan" are considered, two more women, Beth Stelling and Cristela Alonzo, can be added to that list. Additionally, Tig Notaro and Deon Cole performed on a brand new stand-up series on Team Coco, the web outpost of "Conan." In the latter part of 2011, "Conan" also booked seven other comics who were either female or non-white, including Baron Vaughn, Tig Notaro, Hugh Moore, Laurie Kilmartin, Ron Funches, Amy Schumer, and Maria Bamford.
Second in diversity to "Conan," "Late Night With Jimmy Fallon" had six stand-up acts perform from January through June, two of which were the Lucas Brothers and Wendy Liebman. The other four were white men (one of them being a white guy named Bob Marley, but we'll let that one slide).
Sadly, McCarthy points out that things aren't much different on cable.
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