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Craig Ferguson / The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson
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The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson is an American late-night talk show hosted by Scottish-American comedian Craig Ferguson. Ferguson is the third regular host of The Late Late Show, which airs on CBS. The show's title is a variation of "Late Show with David Letterman", which precedes it in the CBS late-night lineup.
 Show format
The show starts with a cold open introduction, sometimes with a puppet(s), followed by a commercial break, then the opening credits. Craig almost always begins the show (after the first commercial break) by saying "Welcome to Los Angeles, California. Welcome to The Late Late Show. I'm your host, TV's Craig Ferguson". He then says to the camera "Hey! Look at you! Come on in", then begs his audience to stop applauding. He then usually begins the monologue by saying, "It's a great day for America, everybody." On days when an exceptionally negative news story is prominent, Ferguson will omit the line.
Craig's monologue is informal and largely-improvised and often spills over into his first segment following a commercial break. Ferguson reads and responds to viewer e-mail almost every night. Other segments include loosely scripted comedy sketches which feature Ferguson in costume or performing in collaboration with any of a number of semi-regular guests including performers such as Dave Foley, Betty White, Tim Gunn, Jeffrey Tambor, Daniel McVicar, Kristen Bell, Henry Winkler, and Tim Meadows. Occasionally a guest will participate in a sketch, such as Ewan McGregor.. Most shows include celebrity interviews and sometimes a musical guest and or stand-up comedy act. Musical performances are often taped before the rest of a show.
Ferguson has used many running gags that span multiple shows and have colorful animated graphics. These have included themed weeks such as "Crab Week" and "Shark Week" (though Craig admits that the show's budget makes most of the themes limited mostly to graphics), a sound effects machine installed at his desk (which has been removed), "Dear Aquaman" (in which Craig dresses as the superhero and gives advice), and "Election Fever" during the run-up to the 2008 Presidential election. Another running gag is the "photo of Paul McCartney". When McCartney is mentioned in the monologue, Ferguson will call for a photo of McCartney, which is actually a photo of actress Angela Lansbury and vice versa. The show often uses variations of this gag featuring other pairs of look-alike celebrities.
The show ends with "What Did We Learn on the Show Tonight, Craig?" where Craig summarizes the lessons of the evening.
 Sports highlights delays
Since CBS holds the rights to several major professional golf tournaments, including The Masters and the PGA Championship, along with tennis' US Open, these events also include 15 minute-long late night highlights shows hosted by either Jim Nantz or another CBS Sports host summarizing the day's action. Previous to mid-2007, Ferguson's monologue would air as usual, followed by Ferguson asking viewers to stay tuned for the sports highlight show (which would air shortly after), followed by the guest and musical portion of the Late Late Show, splitting an episode into two separate 10 minute and 45 minute segments. After mid-2007 however, CBS decided to air the sports highlight shows between Letterman and Ferguson, allowing the Late Late Show to air its full hour beginning at 12:50am ET/PT on those nights.
On a few occasions Ferguson's opening monologue has taken on a serious tone.
A new set debuted on the July 24, 2006 episode, after the previous one had been comically destroyed by Bob Barker and others from The Price is Right. It included a miniature CBS dirigible that floats along over the backdrop depicting Los Angeles.
In the week starting with March 17, 2008, The Late Late Show debuted a new set featuring a desk/interview area on a raised platform. The backdrop was also changed to a more realistic and detailed representation of Los Angeles.
In 2008 Worldwide Pants Incorporated signed a product placement deal with Ford to promote the Ford Flex during The Late Late Show. Eight episodes ("with one repeat") of the show included custom-written skits in which Ferguson played the leader of a band called the Highlanderz, riding in a Flex as they traveled from Los Angeles International Airport to the CBS Studio. The skits were shown on successive Thursdays starting on September 4.
When Ferguson was hired as the full-time replacement for Craig Kilborn, he co-wrote and recorded a new theme song.
Beginning July 7, 2006, the show's theme featured only the ending of the original song, though by January 2, 2008 the full theme had returned, mostly intact.
 Musical performances
At some point[specify] The Late Late Show began taping musical performances separately from the rest of the show. For example, the band No Age were videotaped on October 2, 2008 for an appearance scheduled to air October 27. That performance was also the subject of an equal-time rule controversy in which Randy Randall was not allowed to wear a pro-Barack Obama T-shirt. Randall, not wanting to cancel the appearance, chose instead to turn the T-shirt inside out and write "Free Health Care" on the shirt with a Sharpie marker
Impersonations and characters
Impersonations and skit characters frequently done by Ferguson on the show include Prince Charles, Sean Connery, The Queen, Andy Rooney, Aquaman, Michael Caine ["in Space"] and now [in Spain], and Bono. He claims that he developed his imitation of Caine after an eight hour long plane ride, in which he sat behind Caine who "gabbed" with his wife the entire trip.
Occasionally one of Ferguson's crew members will dress up as and impersonate him, particularly while he is portraying someone else in a skit.
The climax was reached on July 15, 2006, when Bob, flanked by the rest of The Price is Right's staff, including announcer Rich Fields and some of Barker's Beauties, staged a "surprise" visit. This was the last show before a long-planned replacement of the set. Although Barker did not injure Ferguson, he did do some serious damage to his desk with a single blow. The desk was later totally destroyed by the models, and Ferguson returned, after the commercial break, with a card table covered by a checkered picnic cloth. The episode ended with Ferguson helping the episode's musical guests, Family Force 5, completely trash the set.
Barker appeared on his show a few months later, after announcing his retirement and presented a portrait of himself as a vampire to Ferguson as a gift.
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