Paul Reiser Speaks Out About NBC on ‘The Tonight Show’

Published 4 years ago by , Updated August 13th, 2013 at 11:03 pm,

After getting the news that his new sitcom The Paul Reiser Show had been cancelled after just two episodes, comedian Paul Reiser had some choice words for NBC’s decision makers during an appearance on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.

Reiser’s appearance on The Tonight Show was originally intended to promote his new sitcom, but after epically bad ratings, the comedian’s triumphant return to television became just another notch in NBC’s troubled line-up. Despite the professional setback, Reiser kept his appointment with Leno and in doing so, gave back a little of what he’d been getting.

Much can be said of Reiser’s appearance. He was sarcastic, witty and, not surprisingly, more than a little disgruntled. At first, Reiser appeared to be addressing the events that led to The Paul Reiser Show’s demise, but he quickly took the offensive by alluding to Leno’s own difficulty with the network, and the recent late-night debacle, which saw the host back behind the Tonight Show desk after stepping down and handing the show over to Conan O’Brien.

Said Reiser:

“NBC, to my knowledge, they don’t traditionally make bad decisions. Have you heard that? I don’t know what your experience is.”

To Reiser’s credit, he did acknowledge the fact that his show was hardly a blip on the radar. Even when sandwiched between two hit NBC comedies like Community and The Office, The Paul Reiser Show pulled in record low numbers. That acknowledgement, however, came with the caveat that the network had failed in both its placement of the show (opposite American Idol) and through a serious lack of promotion. Reiser joked:

“It turns out they said we enjoy missing you more than actually having you. But listen, I don’t take it personally. Listen, when you’re the last place network, you don’t want to jeopardize that. You’ve found your niche. Stay there. So I get it.”

Adding to the inherent awkwardness of the situation, Reiser wasn’t even Leno’s first guest; he followed Christina Aguilera, who coincidentally was there to promote The Voice, an American Idol-esque clone for NBC. Aguilera seemed content to avoid the situation until Leno pulled her in, and that was where things got a little dicey. Reiser turned his attention to the singer/actress by saying, “No, no, no. The reason they didn’t promote our show, it all went to you.”

Christina Aguilera The Tonight Show Paul Reiser Speaks Out About NBC on The Tonight Show

The entire segment was more than a little uncomfortable, but also very entertaining to watch.



Reiser made some salient points regarding NBC’s place amongst the other networks and how it has handled its line-up and talent. Airing two episodes of a program many weren’t even aware was on suggests the network never really believed in the show to begin with. Hopefully, Reiser’s comments weren’t too biting, so that the remaining five episodes of The Paul Reiser Show that he mentioned might yet see the light of day.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter

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  1. Hmm. I see. So it’s NBC’s fault for not promoting The Paul Reiser Show.

    I’m sure it had nothing to do with it being a completely derivative, sanitized-for-network-television version of Curb Your Enthusiasm, right?

    • Well, I never heard of the show until SR wrote about it.

      • I saw advertisements for it a few times while watching Community and The Office. Not sure if they advertised it much outside of that though.

  2. The show sucked. End of story.

    • I disagree with you there sir. Despite it essentially being a Curb Your Enthusiasm knock off, it was still pretty funny and entertaining. Especially the whole bit about Henry Rollins not being funny, cause I’ve been saying that for years now.

      • I watched the first episode out of sheer laziness and avoided the second one like the plague. But because I am a die-hard Henry Rollins fan, I regret that decision somewhat. I heard he was on the second episode after the fact. I would have liked to have seen that.

        Doesn’t really make a difference, though. I’m sure it was still awful.

  3. To bad for Paul, talk about a lack of promotion, never heard about show. And it’s funny, after just watching ALIENS for the 100th time, I was wondering what happened to him ??

  4. It couldn’t possibly be the fact that the show just wasn’t good. I had problems just watching the opening monologue. It was a poorly written show in an otherwise fairly good night of comedy. That time slot has been reserved for fecal matter for the last two years.

  5. I never saw a promo for it to be honest. What did NBC really expect