Paul Reiser Speaks Out About NBC on 'The Tonight Show'

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 Jay Leno The Tonight Show with Jay Leno

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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