Leave Jimmy Fallon Alone

via National Review by David French

Over the long term, the politicization of everything is a greater threat to American national life than any single politician — including Donald Trump or any candidate the Democrats nominate to challenge him in 2020. If there is no place for common engagement or common enjoyment, then we face more polarization. And make no mistake, polarization can’t continue to worsen indefinitely without placing dangerous strains on the union itself

And that brings me, of course, to Jimmy Fallon.  Fallon, you see, is under fire for not using his late-night show as an arm of the #Resistance. Sure, he pokes fun at Trump, but he was famously relatively kind to Trump when Trump appeared on his show last September. He’s far less political than, say, Stephen Colbert, and when he is political, he’s far less biting.

And now it turns out that Fallon’s relatively apolitical stance may actually be costing him — not just elite regard but his place in the ratings. Colbert has closed the gap. Today the New York Times published a long piece exploring Fallon’s response to Trump, his modest ratings slump (the show is still profitable), and whether he intends to change.

Here’s how Times culture reporter Dave Itzkoff frames Fallon’s challenge: He is weathering the most tumultuous period in his tenure there — a predicament for which he has himself to thank, and one that raises the question of whether the multitalented but apolitical Mr. Fallon can ride out the current era of politicized, choose-your-side entertainment, when he just wants to have a good time.

The complete story here > Leave Jimmy Fallon Alone


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